JOMC 342.1 Syllabus
JOMC/AFAM 342.1: The Black Press and U.S. History
Carroll Hall 11
2 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Professor Harry Amana
219 Carroll Hall
Hours: MW 10-11, 1-2 /3:30-4 firstname.lastname@example.org
TTh: by appointment URL: http://www.unc.edu/~haman
Periodicals in UNC-CH Libraries
Catalog description: The Black Press and U.S.
History JOMC 342 3 credits. A chronological survey of the
African-American press in the United States since 1827. Emphasis is
on key people and issues during critical eras in the African-American
The Early Black Press In America, 1827 to
1860, Frankie Hutton.
A History of the Black Press,
Armistead S. Pride and Clint C. Wilson II.
Electronic Reserves (click on
"SEARCH for Electronic Reserves" and then on "Amana" for access)
Web sites as linked in the weekly section of this
Articles are contained on Electronic Reserves under "JOMC 342."
Dissertations and masters theses also are in The Park Library.
Internet Sites: Some sites on the weekly syllabus are a part of
the required reading for the course. Other sites provide materials
for original research. They include, for example:
The "Women In Journalism"
link of the Washington Press Club Foundation's oral history project that
includes the transcripts of extensive interviews with Marvel
Cooke, Frances Murphy and Ethel Payne. ,
The Charles Alston link/site on the site of
Archives that contains more than 100 of Alston's WWII editorial
cartoons that he created for publication in the black press.
The Marcus Garvey link/site contains several
examples of Garvey's writings on Africa, the Caribbean and the United
And there are more.
Course Objective: The course will trace the development
of the black press from its beginning in 1827 to the present, using major
events in African American history as a backdrop. Primary emphasis will be
on the development of the modern black press since World War I. We will
look at black newspapers and magazines as cultural depositories and
historical documents that recorded the philosophical debates, problems,
solutions, concerns, growth and development of the African-American
community in the United States.
Course Structure: The classes are made up of lectures
and discussions based on the required and reserve readings, periodic
handouts, films and Web sites. Students are responsible for having read
all materials assigned on the daily syllabus. Even though all materials
assigned on the daily syllabus may not be covered or discussed in class,
the instructor assumes that students will have read all materials and that
they understand all of the materials unless they ask questions during
Internet Communication: Some material will be sent to
students via email on the Internet, or through the course listserv. All
students officially registered for the class are included on the listserv
with their UNC-CH email address. Students who wish to use another email
address must notify the instructor immediately.
Undergraduate Research Report (40
percent)Students are required to examine microfilm or original
copies of a black newspaper or magazine, review any literature on the
paper or magazine, and write a detailed report on their
observations and findings. Report topics should be chosen
early -- no later than Oct. 11. Undergraduate students are
required to write a 7- to 10-page report.
Graduate Research Paper (40 percent)
Students are required to examine microfilm and original copies of black
newspapers and magazines, review the literature on the black press, and
develop a well-conceived research project. Any research method is
acceptable, and models may be drawn from your textbooks and readings in
the reserve file. Graduate students are required to write a 20- to
25-page research paper.
Research projects are due Nov. 20. Papers received by Nov. 22
will be accepted with a one-grade reduction. Papers will not
be accepted after Nov. 22. Graduate students may also be required
to make a class presentation on their research.
Take-Home Midterm Examination (25
There will be a take-home examination due on Oct. 4.
Questions will be given via the class listserv on Oct. 2. Hard copies will
be available on the counter outside my office in Carroll Hall. Completed exams
must be typed, double-space. Questions will be taken from a list of
questions that will be posted on a link on my Web site throughout the semester
as we finish each segment of the course. Students are encouraged to prepare
for the examination by forming small study groups.
Take-Home Final Examination (35
percent) This is a required examination due Thursday, Dec. 14
by 3 p.m.
The exam will be posted on the class listserv Wednesday,
Dec. 13, by noon. Hard copies will be available on the counter below my
Reporting Suite mailbox on the second floow in Carroll Hall. Completed
exams must be typed, double-space. The exam may cover everything examined
in the course during the semester. Examination questions will be taken
from the list of questions posted on my syllabus Web link throughout the
semester as we complete study on each topic. Students are encouraged to
study in small groups to prepare for this examination.
Grades for this course will be determined as follows:
A = 95 or above B+= 89-91 C+= 79-81 D+= 69-71
A-= 92-94 B = 85-88 C = 75-78 D = 65-68
B-= 82-84 C-= 72-74 D-= 62-64
Writing Standards -- Student writing will be judged by
the usual School of Journalism and Mass Communication standards. Factual
errors result in automatic failures; significant points will be loss for
spelling, typographical, grammatical and punctuation errors. Of course,
points will be added for exceptional research and writing. Papers with
significant spelling, grammar or punctuation errors
will not receive a grade above C-, regardless of the quality of the analysis
or ideas presented in the paper.
Students should consult The Writing Center site, MLA Format at: http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/mla.html
before writing their research papers. The Center's
staff is also available for consultation, but you must register early.
Honor Code: Students are reminded that a failure to do
all of their own research and writing would be a violation of the
University Honor Code and could result in disciplinary action by the
School of Journalism and Mass Communication. For comprehensive
information on the university's Honor System, go to www.unc.edu/depts/honor.
To learn how to avoid plagiarism, students should go to the university's Honor System Plagiarism site
at: http://honor.unc.edu/students/plagiarism.html, or to The Writing
Center's Plagiarism site at:
Introduction to The Black Press and U.S. History
Black publications in UNC-CH Libraries: www.unc.edu/~haman/journals.htm
Black media online: http://www.unc.edu/~haman/media.htm
1827-1865 The early black press
Aug. 28, 30/(Labor Day Holiday Sept 4), 6, 11
Discussion Topics: W. E. B. DuBois' "double consciousness" and the black press. Abolition, emigration or integration?
History and philosophy of the first editors. An examination of some ironies,
themes and contradictions. The role of the black press. Frederick
Douglass as writer and magazine editor. Women in the black press.
Pride/Wilson: pp. 1-73
DuBois' The Souls of Black Folk, "The
Forethought" and "Of Our Spiritual Strivings"
Douglass' "Fourth of July" speech: http://www.teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=162
Douglass' "Free Speech" speech:
1866-1898 Reconstruction and beyond
Sept. 13, 18, 20, 25
Discussion Topic: The northern migration and the emergence of the
modern black press. The case of the N.C. Record and the
Wilmington Riot of 1898.
Pride/Wilson: pp. 85-126
"Ida B. Wells: A Passion for Justice"
"Wilmington Race Riots of 1898" panel transcript,
Black Issues Forum, UNC TV:
Booker T. Washington's "Industrial Education for
the Negro": http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=62
W.E.B. DuBois' critique of Washington's
W.E.B. DuBois' "Talented Tenth":
Reserve: "Crisis, 16(3) - editorial": "Close Ranks" editorial by W.E.B. DuBois.
1898 - 1919 Into the 20th Century
Sept. 27/ Oct. 2, 4 (Midterm Exam!), 9
Discussion Topics: The move for integration and equality: "No
Officers, No Fight." Robert Abbott and the Defender. The U.S.
government and the black press.
Pride/Wilson: pp. 127-184
Handout: "Radicalism and Sedition Among
the Negroes ...")
Marcus Garvey's papers: http://www.isop.ucla.edu/africa/mgpp/
1920-1940 Between the wars
Oct. 11, 16, 18 (FALL BREAK, 5 p.m.)
Discussion Topics: The Harlem Renaissance. Variations on previous
themes: nationalism, integration and socialism -- Garvey, DuBois,
Randolph. The Associated Negro Press. Heros of the Depression: Joe
Louis, Jesse Owens, Haile Selassie. The National Newspaper Publishers
Electronic Reserve: "Charles S. Johnson" (Opportunity)
Electronic Reserve: "A. Philip Randolph" (The Messenger)
Electronic Reserve: "Robert S. Abbott" (Abbott's Monthly)
Clip from "The Black Press: Soldiers Without Swords"
Black Press: Soldiers Without Swords
Afro American beauty ads: http://www.afro.com/history/bnw/bwmain.html
From the "Women in Journalism site: Marvel
Cooke and The Crisis
1941-1945 The black press and WWII
Oct. 23, 25, 30/ Nov. 1
Discussion Topics: The "Double V" campaign. The black war
correspondents. Editorial drawings of Charles Alston.
Negro Digest and the beginning of Johnson Publications.
Pride/Wilson: pp. 185-197
peruse This Is Our War excerpts: http://www.afro.com/history/OurWar/intro.html
Afro Reporter Ollie Stewart's stories on
the invasion of France: http://www.afro.com/history/OurWar/stewart1.html
"The Art of Propaganda: Charles Alston's World
War II Editorial Cartoons for the Office of War Information and the
Black Press," Electronic
Charles Alston (editorial drawings). After you click on this link:
1. Press the Yellow search button to go to the Basic search screen and ...
Before you press the "Go" button:
2. Enter "Charles Alston" in the Keywords box.
3. Select the limit results radio button for "1000."
4. Select the box marked "Descriptions of Archival Materials linked to digital copies."
5. Now press the "Go" button.
6. This will give you six images per page with 18 total pages for 106 total images.
1946-1953 The black press after WWII
Nov. 6, 8, 13
Discussion Topics: Johnson Publication expands. The Korean War and
the McCarthy era. Jackie Robinson and the black press. In the
tradition of Wells: Alice Dunnigan and Ethel Payne.
"No Runs, No Hits, No Blacks," (On reserve, Undergraduate Library)
Afro's history of Jackie Robinson: http://www.afro.com/history/Robinson/intro.html
From the "Women in Journalism" site: Ethel Payne's foreign
assignments for the Defender, and Frances Murphy's
rememberences of the Afro-American
1954-1964 The Civil rights era
Nov. 15, 20
Discussion Topics: The decline of the black press; the rise of
Johnson Publishing. Role of the black press during the Civil Rights
Bates and the Arkansas State Press
1965-1970s A move toward nationalism and conservatism
Nov. 27, 29/ Dec. 4
Discussion Topics: The black press and Bakke.
Muhammad Speaks coverage of the Vietnam War; an overview of The Black
Panther, Black Scholar, and Freedomways.
The "New Black" magazine survivors: Black Collegian, Black Enterprise and Essence.
Pride/Wilson: pp. 211-260
Stroman/Poindexter Folder (Bakke)
Peruse the Muhammad Speaks sites: Excerpts at http://www.muhammadspeaks.com/
and the cartoons of Gerald 2X at
Peruse articles from The Black Panther at http://www.etext.org/Politics/MIM/bpp/#issues
and illustrations of the paper's front cover at http://www.bobbyseale.com/cover.htm
1980s to the millennium
Discussion Topics: The Kerner Commission Report. The future of the
black press. The black press in North Carolina.
Readings: Pride/Wilson: pp. 261-268
Pride/Wilson: pp. 261-268
Kerner Commission Report, Chapter 15 ("The News Media and the Disorders") on Electronic Reserve