Historian Philip Foner joins the show again to discuss Black history in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. Foner is the foremost historian on the labor movement in the U. S. He is the author of over eighty works, including a four volume history of the American labor movement, "Organized Labor and the Black Worker," and "Women and the American Labor Movement," the second volume of which was recently published. He is currently a visiting professor at Rutgers University.
The Temple professor and Pen/Faulkner Award-winning author explains the historical context of his new novel, The Chaneysville Incident. He discusses his different experiences with racism in the North and South, as well as his involvement in the organizing of Philadelphia-area writers.
Writer Allan Gurganus. His novel, Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All, which is scheduled for publication later this fall, is the story of a blind 99-year-old widow, now confined to a nursing home, whose stories about her life and her husband's take in almost 150 years of American history. Mostly her stories focus on her husband and how his experiences in the Civil War, when he was only 13, haunted him, and her, until he died. Gurganus, a professor of writing at New York's Sarah Lawrence University, has written for The New Yorker, Harpers and The Atlantic Monthly.
Caryl Phillips, author of five novels, a work of nonfiction and many scripts for film, theater, radio and television. His new novel,"Crossing the River" (Knopf), tells stories of slavery and the relationships forged by and among some of its perpetrators and victims. Phillips takes liberties with time in following the lives of three African children sold into slavery by their desperate father -- one freed and sent back to Africa as a missionary, one searching for her lost husband and child in the American wild west and one, a World War II GI stationed in Yorkshire, England.
Historian and author Nell Irvin Painter is a Professor of American History at Princeton University. She's written a biography of the ex-slave and fiery abolitionist who was born Isabella Van Wagenen and rechristened herself Sojourner Truth, called "Sojourner Truth: A Life, A Symbol."
Filmmaker Ken Burns is the director of "The Civil War" and "Baseball," the hit documentaries on PBS. The former was the network's highest rated series. Burns' newest project is the three-hour documentary, "Thomas Jefferson" about our third president, narrated by Ossie Davis.
Professor of History at Columbia University Eric Foner discusses the new study guide by the producers of the film "Amistad." Though Foner finds the film "interesting historical(ly)" he is critical of the guide because of it's inaccuracies. Foner says the guide "erases the distinction between fact and fabrication," using composite characters instead of real ones, and that the guide misrepresents the significance of the Amistad incident. (Foner's editorial about this appeared on The New York Times Op-Ed page, December 20, 1997)
Kevin Bales is a leading expert on the modern-day practice of slavery. He is author of the new book "Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy." (University of California Press) Bales is a principal lecturer at the Roehampton Institute, University of Surrey, England.
While working at a blueprint shop in Charleston, South Carolina, a customer brought in some Confederate money to order a blowup. The imagery shocked Jones. The money showed slaves. Jones began to collect the brown and gray money with slaves picking cotton, corn and tobacco and loading barrels cheerfully. He then created large scale full color paintings based on the images. The art is now on display at America's Black Holocaust Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.