In Search of Our Roots

In Search of Our Roots

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Unlike most white Americans who, if they are so inclined, can search their ancestral records, identifying who among their forebears was the first to set foot on this countrya€™s shores, most African Americans, in tracing their familya€™s past, encounter a series of daunting obstacles. Slavery was a brutally efficient nullifier of identity, willfully denying black men and women even their names. Yet, from that legacy of slavery, there have sprung generations whoa€™ve struggled, thrived, and lived extraordinary lives. For too long, African Americansa€™ family trees have been barren of branches, but, very recently, advanced genetic testing techniques, combined with archival research, have begun to fill in the gaps. Here, scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., backed by an elite team of geneticists and researchers, takes nineteen extraordinary African Americans on a once unimaginable journey, tracing family sagas through U.S. history and back to Africa. Those whose recovered pasts collectively form an African American a€œpeoplea€™s historya€ of the United States include celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey, Whoopi Goldberg, Chris Rock, Don Cheadle, Chris Tucker, Morgan Freeman, Tina Turner, and Quincy Jones; writers such as Maya Angelou and Bliss Broyard; leading thinkers such as Harvard divinity professor Peter Gomes, the Reverend T. D. Jakes, neurosurgeon Ben Carson, and sociologist Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot; and famous achievers such as astronaut Mae Jemison, media personality Tom Joyner, decathlete Jackie Joyner-Kersee, and Ebony and Jet publisher Linda Johnson Rice. More than a work of history, In Search of Our Roots is a book of revelatory importance that, for the first time, brings to light the lives of ordinary men and women who, by courageous example, blazed a path for their famous descendants. For a reader, there is the stirring pleasure of witnessing long-forgotten struggles and triumphsa€“but therea€™s an enduring reward as well. In accompanying the nineteen contemporary achievers on their journey into the past and meeting their remarkable forebears, we come to know ourselves. From the Hardcover edition.Oprah was disappointed to hear that we could not with certainty trace Amandaa#39;s line any further than this. But by going ... In Opraha#39;s case, by searching over the records of slave owners in Mississippi, we were extremely lucky. We found ananbsp;...


Title:In Search of Our Roots
Author: Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Publisher:Crown - 2009-01-27
ISBN-13:

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