Resources for study

Study and understanding are part of a quest. Begin your study with what matters to you most, and follow your study where it leads you. Balance what you discover with the truth of your own life. Study that helps you regain or heighten your self-value is work worth the doing. Your study path need not follow anyone else’s pursuit. Knowledge is not a weapon to use on one another. Sharing information and insights should be an act of love and never a means to make someone else feel less because they have not studied what you have studied. 

We are aware that there are those who debate the commitment, trustworthiness, and soundness of some of our writers and scholars. Instead of cancelling out these thinkers, we suggest that we invest in the value of their thought versus a notion of perfect contributors. We need not cancel someone’s contributions because that person gives evidence of their shortcomings as a human being. There are four important questions for study: Can I follow the trail of the research? Does the work advance my quest? What can I take from this to help me live a better life? What can I take from this to help me be a better human being in the world?

Technology offers us countless sources of information. Here we offer some ideas, books, articles, and links that have been useful to us. We hope you find them of use. We urge you to support independent bookstores and Black Classic Press, a stalwart contributor to our pursuit of knowledge. We also urge you to read writers from the 18th century through today to appreciate the breadth, depth, and scope of the work that has been achieved against all odds.

Please consider the following. Nana Balfour II (Asa Grant Hilliard III) noted that there were several reasons for our lack of unity and self-understanding:

  1. Loss of Our Names,
  2. Loss of Our Ways,
  3. Loss of our Appetite for Our Culture,
  4. Acceptance of False Memory regarding African and  Non-African people,
  5. Loss of Land and Political Definition based on Land,
  6. Loss Independence regarding goods and products, sociopolitical and cultural processes, and self-determination, and
  7. Loss of Sensitivity regarding centeredness, sociopolitical continuity, wholeness, and progress

 

 

In December, we will archive Nana Balfour’s list and provide another list of recommended thinkers. We take this moment to honor the life and work of Nana Balfour’s daughter Dr. Patricia Hilliard-Nunn (1963-2020) who carried on and expanded his work through her activism, teaching, and publishing.

Pictured Above                                                                                                                                          Column 1: Nana Balfour II (Asa Hilliard, III), Runoko Rashidi, Cheikh Anta Diop                                 Column 2: Paul Robeson and Ida B. Wells-Barnett                                                                               Column 3: Queen Mother Mother, John Henrik Clarke, Marima Ani, and Frances Cress Welsing

Please consider the following. Nana Balfour II (Asa Grant Hilliard III) noted that there were several reasons for our lack of unity and self-understanding:

  1. Loss of Our Names,
  2. Loss of Our Ways,
  3. Loss of our Appetite for Our Culture,
  4. Acceptance of False Memory regarding African and  Non-African people,
  5. Loss of Land and Political Definition based on Land,
  6. Loss Independence regarding goods and products, sociopolitical and cultural processes, and self-determination, and
  7. Loss of Sensitivity regarding centeredness, sociopolitical continuity, wholeness, and progress
Nana Balfour recommended the following thinkers to help us recover from our losses and build unit and self-understanding:
 
Carter G. Woodson – see also The Miseducation of the Negro
 

Runoko Rashidi  – see also “The Global African Community Reference Notes: A Preliminary Global African Presence Book List” and My Global Journeys – In Search of the African Presence

Drusilla Dunjee Houston – see also Wonderful Ethiopians of the Ancient Cushite Empire

Ivan Van Sertima – see also They Came Before Columbus

Frances Cress Welsing – see also The Isis Papers

Edward Wilmot Blyden – see also panafricanalliance.com

Marimba Ani – see also Yurugu: An African-Centered Critique of European Cultural Thought and Behavior

Amilcar Cabral – see also Return to the Source (video is in French, but it allows you to see and hear him unfiltered).

Queen Mother Moore

Omwuchekwa Chinweizu – see also Decolonization of African Literature, Decolonising the African Mind, The West and the Rest of Us

Simone Schwarz-Bart – see also In Praise of Black Women, 1-3

John Henrik Clarke  see also this listing of texts by Clarke

Cheikh Anta DIOP – see also The African Origin of Civilization: Myth or Reality? Precolonial Black Africa, Civilization or Barbarism: An Authentic Anthropology. See also this video

Anna Julia Cooper – see also A Voice from the South

Fu-Kiau Bunseki – see also African Cosmology of the Bantu-Kongo: Tying the Spiritual Knot – Principles of Life and Living, Self-Healing Power and Therapy:  Old Teachings from Africa

Ida B. Wells-Barnett – see also Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases, America Awakened, the Selected Works of Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Crusade for Justice: The autobiography of Ida B. Wells, and The Collected Works of Ida B. Wells-Barnett.

William Hansberry – see also Pillars in Ethiopian History: The William Leo Hansberry African History Notebook, Africa and Africans As Seen by Classical Writers: The William Leo Hansberry History Notebook

Ngugi wa Thiong’oDecolonising the Mind: The Politics of Language in African Literature

 

Top Row: Magdalena Campos-Pons, Ayi Kwei Armah, book by Drusilla Houston, El Anatsui Gawu, Olmec Head. Second Row: Sword of Okomfo Anokye, from “Spirit Seeker; John Coltrane’s Musical Journey” by Golio and Gutierrez, ancient representation of Ma’at.                                                                                                                      Third Row: Adinkra Symbol stamps, replica of Nana Yaa Asantewa, the Golden Stool, texts to add to Nana Balfour’s list*, and segment of mural by John Biggers.  

* The texts are Follow me to Africa by Beatric Achaleke; Everyday Life in an Early West African Empire by Walker, Millar, and Keita, Black Star: The African Presence in Early Europe and Uncovering the African Post: the Ivan Van Sertima Papers by Runoko Rashidi; Blacks in Antiquity by Frank Snowden; The Sons of Sheba’s Race by William R. Scott; 6,000 Years of African Combs by Sally-Ann Ashton, Abraham Hanibal: Prince of Legone–Pushkin’s African Ancestor by Dieudonne Gnammankou; Blackamoores–Africans in Tudor England: Their Presence, Status, and Origins by Okyeka; World Art by Ellis; and Roman Egyptomania by Ashton.