Between the end of the nineteenth century and the eve of World
War II, Africans displaced by colonial rule aggrandized the
attainments of American blacks, creating an African american myth
that played an important role in their religious, political and
social life. This myth, while existing in direct contradiction to
the intense discrimination faced by black people in the United
States, provided Africans with an inspirational model upon which to
improve their lives.
"Africans on African-Americans" traces the development of the
African American myth and the way in which the Liberal Movement in
South Africa looked to America for a formula for racial harmony
that eluded their troubled country. While highlighting the strength
of the African american myth, Gershoni also demonstrates that
everywhere the myth had adherents it also had opponents, who
insisted that the solution to Africa's ills lay in African culture
and African peoples.
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