ProQuest launches “Black Studies” that combines African American newspapers, journals and archives in single database

ProQuest launches “Black Studies” that combines African American newspapers, journals and archives in single database

BCN Staff – Feb. 20, 2022 – A London-based analytics firm that powers research in academic, corporate, government, public and school libraries across the globe has launched a new searchable database that includes a large swath of Black History in the U.S., including archives of defunct African American newspapers and millions of pages of NAACP Papers.

On Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14), ProQuest announced the launch of “Black Studies,” a browsable collection of curated sources on the history and lives of Black Americans for use in classrooms and research. ProQuest said the new resource covers several centuries of history, from the colonial era to recent times. At launch, it includes 10 major historical Black newspapers, 120 archival collections and 120 full-text journals, video, and faculty essays all centered on Black studies.

“At ProQuest, we believe that knowledge and trusted information can help guide better understanding and change. In collaboration with renowned faculty and scholars in Black history, we brought existing and new content together onto one platform, making important content discoverable in a new way,” said Susan Bokern, vice president of product management at the London-based subsidiary of publicly traded Clarivate Analytics Plc.

“ProQuest Black Studies allows users to see contextual relationships within a topic and make serendipitous discoveries. Students and faculty can browse the archival collections as though they were exploring a physical archive in a library,” added Bokern.

The new Black Studies archive is now available as a subscription for academic libraries. ProQuest said the new database project is ideal for research at all levels, from undergraduate courses to Ph.D. programs. It supports research projects in African American history, U.S. history, political science, and sociology courses.

In addition, graduate students can use the collection for articles, research seminar papers, theses, and dissertations. Topic pages and a comprehensive timeline allow faculty and students to pinpoint a person or event and then quickly retrieve newspaper articles, primary sources, and journal articles on the subject.

“I love the topic pages that feature people, events or organizations,” said Ashley Farmer, associate professor of African and African Diaspora Studies & History at the University of Texas Austin. “These are ideal for asking students to dig deeper and great entry points for paper research.”

ProQuest said the resource will continue to grow over time with new archival collections, additional videos, government content – such as key Supreme Court cases and laws – and more. Content in the Black Studies Collection includes:

  • The NAACP Papers: nearly two million pages of internal memos, legal briefings and direct-action summaries from the association’s national, legal and branch offices throughout the U.S.
  • Records of three of the most important civil rights organizations of the 1950s and 1960s: Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)
  • Award-winning primary-source collections focusing on slavery and the abolitionist movement, including Race, Slavery and Free Blacks project, edited by Loren Schweninger; and the Black Abolitionist Papers, edited by C. Peter Ripley and George E. Carter
  • An incredible archive of historical Black newspapers that capture the contours of Black community life – including the Chicago Defender and the New York Amsterdam News

To learn more about ProQuest, go here: https://about.proquest.com/

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