Dr. John Henrik Clarke was a Pan-Africanist writer, historian, lecturer, professor, and a pioneer in the creation of Africana studies and professional institutions in academia starting in the late 1960s. He was a prominent intellectual during the Black Power Movement, advocating studies on the African-American experience and the place of Africans in world history. He challenged the views of academic historians and helped change the way African history was studied and taught around the world.
Dr. Clarke was a scholar who was devoted to redressing what he saw as “a systematic and racist suppression and distortion of African history by traditional scholars.” His writing included six scholarly books and many scholarly articles. He also edited anthologies of writing by African Americans, as well as collections of his own short stories. These writings could be found in his personal library, which was home to over 50,000 books.
Dr. Clarke was the founding chairman of the department of Black and Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College, a subsidiary of City University of New York between 1969 and 1986. Besides teaching at Hunter College and Cornell University, Clarke founded professional associations to support the study of Black culture. He was a founder with Leonard Jeffries and first president of the African Heritage Studies Association, which supported scholars in areas of history, culture, literature and the arts. He was a founding member of other organizations to support work in black culture, such as: The Black Academy of Arts and Letters and the African-American Scholars’ Council.
Additionally, Clarke was named as the Carter G. Woodson Distinguished Visiting Professor of African History at Cornell University’s Africana Studies and Research Center, founding the African Heritage Studies Association along with the Black Caucus of the African Studies Association in 1968- two causes which helped him become a founding chairman.
Dr. Clarke is considered by many as the most prolific historian of African History in the 20th century.
John Henrik Clarke, PhD.
John Henrik Clarke Interview (1973)
John Henrik Clarke About Cheikh Anta Diop
Dr. John Henrik Clarke – Pan Africanism Founding Fathers
Dr. John Henrik Clarke – You Have No Friends
John Henrik Clarke – Marcus Garvey Lecture (August 9, 1990)
Dr. Clarke & Dr. Ben – Shallow Legacy: Ceremony Over Substance
Africa Before Slavery – Part 1
Africa Before Slavery – Part 2
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