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The Scholar and the StruggleLawrence Reddick's Crusade for Black History and Black Power$
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David A. Varel

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469660967

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469660967.001.0001

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Librarianship for Democracy at Home and Abroad

Librarianship for Democracy at Home and Abroad

(p.65) 3 Librarianship for Democracy at Home and Abroad
The Scholar and the Struggle

David A. Varel

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter charts Reddick’s rise as a major African American intellectual during the World War II era. As the curator of the Schomburg Collection in Harlem, Reddick helped organize Pan-African Congresses alongside W. E. B. Du Bois and Kwame Nkrumah, became a force in the Double Victory campaign against fascism at home and abroad, collected black soldiers’ letters during the war, used the library as a base for political organizing in response to crises such as the 1943 Harlem Race Riot and those surrounding the Atlantic Charter, published pioneering articles on Africa and the US military’s evolving policies toward black soldiers, pressured the US government to recognize the military heroics of black messman Dorie Miller, and generally served as a public intellectual for black America. He also worked with Eleanor Roosevelt to effect racial change and served as a member of the American Council of Learned Societies’ Committee on Negro Studies alongside Melville Herskovits and Lorenzo Dow Turner.

Keywords:   Schomburg Collection, Pan-African Congress, W. E. B. Du Bois, Kwame Nkrumah, Double Victory campaign, 1943 Harlem Race Riot, Atlantic Charter, Dorie Miller, Eleanor Roosevelt, American Council of Learned Societies’ Committee on Negro Studies

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