The book also provides an overview of the United States' form of government, national Symbols, political parties, and development of its national identity, as well as important historic documents, including the Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, and the Emancipation Proclamation.
Boys strapped to carpet looms in India, women trafficked into sex slavery across Europe, children born into bondage in Mauritania, and migrants imprisoned at gunpoint in the United States are just a few of the many forms slavery takes in the twenty-first century. There are twenty-seven million slaves alive today, more than at any point in history, and they are found on every continent in the world except Antarctica. To Plead Our Own Cause contains ninety-five narratives by slaves and former slaves from around the globe. Told in the words of slaves themselves, the narratives movingly and eloquently chronicle the horrors of contemporary slavery, the process of becoming free, and the challenges faced by former slaves as they build a life in freedom.
Current historians’ views of Texas in the nineteenth century and especially the significance of the Alamo as a site of memory in architecture, art, and film across the years comprise a major element of this volume. Other nineteenth-century historical events are also examined through their memorializations in the twentieth century: the construction of Civil War monuments by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, public and private Juneteenth celebrations, and the Tejano memorial on the Capitol grounds commemorating the history of Mexicans in Texas. Twentieth-century chapters include collective memories and meaning attached to the Ku Klux Klan, the significance of the civil rights movement in the eyes of different generations of Texans, and the lasting (or fading) Texan memories of Lyndon Baines Johnson.
In 1929, near Plano, Texas, Eddie Stimpson Jr. grew up sharecropping along the old Preston Road. The editors have retained the simplicity of Stimpson's folk speech and spelling patterns, allowing the good-natured humility and wisdom of his personality to shine through the narrative. The details of ordinary family life and community survival include descriptions of cooking, farming, gambling, visiting, playing, doctoring, hunting, bootlegging, and picking cotton, as well as going to school, to church, to funerals, to weddings, to Juneteenth celebrations. This book will be of extraordinary value to folklorists, historians, sociologists, and anyone enjoying a good story.
Juneteenth Emancipation Day Celebration, June 19, 1900, Texas