2014

McGraw-Hill Contemporizes Classic Text 'From Slavery to Freedom' to Bring African American History into the 21st Century Renowned historian and author John Hope Franklin hands down his work to Harvard's Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham

NEW YORK, Feb. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- This February, Black History Month represents an opportunity to reflect on the African American experience in the United States.  Building on this tradition of heritage and scholarship, and incorporating important developments in African American history, McGraw-Hill Higher Education has released From Slavery to Freedom: A History of African Americans (ninth edition), a highly contemporized version of the classic text that has long been regarded as one of the preeminent works on African American history. With nearly 80 percent of the book's scholarship updated to reflect the latest views of African American history, From Slavery to Freedom features current events from the recent landmark presidential election to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the globalization of hip hop.

Similar to the tradition of African storytelling, From Slavery to Freedom's authorship has been passed down. The late Dr. John Hope Franklin, historian and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, originally wrote the text in 1947 on the cusp of the civil rights movement. In recent years, Franklin hand-selected Dr. Evelyn Higginbotham, chair of the Department of African American Studies at Harvard University, whom he had known and mentored since her childhood, to be his writing partner and eventual successor. They collaborated on the latest edition until he died last year at the age of 94.

Referring to the ubiquity and importance of the classic text, which has sold more than 3 million copies and has been translated into numerous languages, Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., in his Foreword notes, "Every scholar of my generation studied Franklin's book in a survey course in African American history; in this sense, we are all his godchildren." This text, which defined the study of African American history, continues to be used by professors and students across the country as an introduction to the field.

"We are pleased that John Hope Franklin selected Dr. Higginbotham to carry forth his vision and work in the field of African American history. His legacy lives on through this historic work and it is an honor to publish it updated for the 21st century," said Steve Debow, president, McGraw-Hill Higher Education Humanities, Social Sciences & Languages. "This new edition puts a modern perspective on African American history and gives students better access through innovative digital resources and tools."

Dr. Higginbotham revised the vast majority of the text's scholarship, including new perspectives on the role of Africans themselves in the Atlantic slave trade. The updated edition also incorporates digital features, including an online Primary Source Investigator and Online Learning Center as resources for students and teachers.

"I have viewed the process of revising From Slavery to Freedom as one of rejuvenation – of capturing what I call the 'present in history,'" said Dr. Higginbotham. "The ninth edition carries the history of African Americans to 2009, drawing upon the latest historical scholarship and including narrative, visual and interpretive qualities that will appeal to today's readers."

Other significant changes in the new edition are:

  • Attention to the complexity of North American slave culture during the colonial period, treating not only the British Colonies, but also slave life in the Spanish, Dutch and French colonies
  • Increased coverage of women and women's history
  • The emergence of grassroots social movements in local communities across the U.S. in the mid-20th century
  • The important role of art and culture as a reflection of the events and ideas of their time periods, including discussion of individual writers, musicians and artists
  • "Windows in Time" features that expose the reader to actual voices from the past

McGraw-Hill's online Primary Source Investigator, new in this edition of From Slavery to Freedom, allows students to engage with more than 100 primary and secondary sources, supporting and enriching the materials they learn through the text. Additionally supporting the print material, students and teachers have access to a range of material to enhance learning and simplify studying through the Online Learning Center, which features student quizzes, essay quizzes and map exercises for students and test banks and PowerPoint slides for teachers.

About McGraw-Hill Higher Education:

McGraw-Hill Higher Education, a unit of McGraw-Hill Education, is a premier provider of teaching and learning solutions for 21st century post-secondary and higher education markets worldwide.  Through a comprehensive range of traditional and digital education content and tools, McGraw-Hill Higher Education empowers educators and prepares professionals and students of all ages to connect, learn and succeed in the global economy. McGraw-Hill Education, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), has offices in 33 countries and publishes in more than 65 languages. Additional information is available at http://www.mheducation.com/.



Contact:

Tom Stanton

McGraw-Hill Education

(212) 904-3214

tom_stanton@mcgraw-hill.com



SOURCE McGraw-Hill Higher Education; McGraw-Hill Connect



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