Black History Literature

  • African American Environmental Thought. Kimberly K. Smith. Lawrence: U of Kansas P, 2007.
    Rich study that both reexamines figures like Douglass, DuBois and Locke and also uncovers a long history of connections between freedom and environmental care that predate the EJ movement by generations.
  • Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry. Edited by Camille T Dungy. Athens: U of Georgia P, 2009.
    A great text for exploring the long history of environmental racism as a theme in the black poetic tradition.
  • The Colors of Nature: Culture, Identity, and the Natural World Edited by Alison Deming and Laurel E. Savoy. Berkeley: Milkweed, 2002.
    A rich anthology of writing from African Americans, Latino Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, mixed race writers and others that brilliantly challenges the assumption that nature writing is white writing.
  • "To Love the Wind and the Rain": African Americans and Environmental History Diane D Glave and Mark Stoll, eds. U of Pittsburgh P, 2006.
    Includes much historical work, from the era of slavery to the present, of interest for environmental justice cultural studies and the continuing effort to squelch the myth that black folks are not environmentalists.
  • The Nature of Cities: Ecocriticism and Urban Environments. Edited by Michael Bennett and David W. Teague, eds. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1999.
    Important collection that helps undermine the notion that nature somehow stops at the edge of cities, and includes some work on black urban environmental issues.
  • Toni Cade Bambara African American author of the remarkable novel, The Salt Eaters a work rich in environmental justice themes.
  • Barbara Neely African American author of the mystery/environmental justice novels about detective/maid Blanche White.