Monday, July 9, 2012

Heart and Soul, by Kadir Nelson

Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans
by Kadir Nelson 
New York: Balzer & Bray, 2011
ISBN 9780061730740

An illustrated history of the African-American people, from slavery in the colonies through the civil rights movement of the 1960s and to the first black President.

The narrator, an “Everywoman” descended from African captives, addresses the reader in a familiar and forthright manner, sharing her story and the details of her ancestors’ struggles. In less than 150 years, great strides have been made toward equality, but there is still far to go. The lavish illustrations are both numerous and splendid. The oil paintings often stretch across both pages of the open book, highlighting all the different skin tones in African-American people and conveying powerful emotion. Discussions of the text can center on slavery, civil rights, racism, Jim Crow laws, labor unions, the U.S. Constitution, the American Revolution, the American Civil War, history written by the conquerors, Barack Obama, politics, and propaganda. The bibliographical references at the end of the book may serve as a starting point for further research.

2012 Coretta Scott King Award
2012 NAACP Image Award
2012 Jane Addams Honor Book

Author’s website
Media: oil paint

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