The Readex Report


Signing Jackie Robinson, Malpractice in South Africa, An American Bohemian: The Readex Report (March 2017)

In this issue: the seminal inking of an African American baseball legend, Apartheid-era doctors under fire for neglect, and the unexplained loss of a literary luminary.


The Robinson Interregnum: The Black Press Responds to the Signing of Jackie Robinson, October 23, 1945-March 1, 1946

Thomas Aiello, Associate Professor of History, Valdosta State University

jackie 2.jpgThere is little about the life of Jackie Robinson that historians do not know. Each part of his saga has been analyzed time and again. Among the periods sometimes given short shrift, however, is the time between the seminal event of his signing with the Montreal Royals, AAA farm team of Branch Rickey’s Brooklyn Dodgers, in October 1945 and his arrival in Sanford, Florida, for his first spring training in an unapologetically racist South….Each of those accounts uses major black weeklies to create a picture of Robinson’s actions and the black response, but looking at smaller black weeklies, less trumpeted than the Pittsburgh Courier and Chicago Defender, a more nuanced picture of that response helps color the solid scholarship that already exists. > Full Story


Medicine on the Rand: The Biko Doctors and South Africa’s Sharp Dissection

Signing Jackie Robinson, Malpractice in South Africa, An American Bohemian: The Readex Report (March 2017)

Historical Newspapers in the Classroom, a Controversial American Master, and a Founding Father’s Political Education: The Readex Report (Nov. 2016)

In this issue: using yesteryear’s advertisements to inspire contemporary classroom research; a compelling profile of a portrait-painting virtuoso; inferring the political intentions of a prominent Founding Father.


Early American Newspapers and the Adverts 250 Project: Integrating Primary Sources into the Undergraduate History Classroom

By Carl Robert Keyes, Associate Professor of History, Assumption College

Keyes.jpgIn January 2016 I launched the Adverts 250 Project, a daily blog that features an advertisement published 250 years ago along with analysis and historical context.  This project grew out of my current research, a book tentatively titled Advertising in Early America: Marketing Media and Messages in the Eighteenth Century. Publishing a blog as a supplement to the book offers several advantages, including the ability to share more of my work more frequently and to broader audiences. It also opened up new opportunities for integrating my research into the undergraduate classroom, enriching both my scholarship and my teaching. > Full Story

Historical Newspapers in the Classroom, a Controversial American Master, and a Founding Father’s Political Education: The Readex Report (Nov. 2016)

Exotic China, Canadian Blacks and a Forgotten American War: The Readex Report (April 2016)

In this issue: The first American vessel to reach exotic China sparks nationwide wonder; nineteenth-century Canadian blacks find their voice in the American press; and an unheralded hero from a forgotten American war. 


The “New People” in China: Using Historical Newspapers to Analyze America’s First Contacts with Asia

By Dane Morrison, Professor of Early American History, Salem State University 

Exotic China, Canadian Blacks and a Forgotten American War: The Readex Report (April 2016)

Just published—The Readex Report: September 2015

IN THIS ISSUE: The curious history of notorious nicknames; the oratory impact of a renowned black author; how the great White North offered welcome and often-overlooked refuge to North American slaves.


War Hawks, Uncle Sam, and The White House: Tracing the Use of Three Phrases in Early American Newspapers

By Donald R. Hickey, Professor, Department of History, Wayne State College

As a student of the early American republic, I’ve always had a fondness for the period’s newspapers.  Newspapers have been published in America since the seventeenth century, and their number steadily rose in the eighteenth century.  By 1775 there were 42 newspapers, and by 1789 there were 92.  Newspapers continued to proliferate in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, so that by the time of the War of 1812 there were nearly 350.  Most were weeklies, but 49 were published two or three times a week, and another 25 were dailies published in... > Full Story


 W. E. B. Du Bois’s Lectures and Speeches: A Brief History

By Phillip Luke Sinitiere, Visiting Assistant Professor of History, Sam Houston State University

Just published—The Readex Report: September 2015

Just published—The Readex Report: April 2015

In this issue: helping young African-American scholars move toward new academic heights; six-foot-under censorship in the honor-bound Old South; and a Founding Father's focus on frugality shapes the American dream.


Diversifying the Graduate School Pipeline with Under-Represented Scholars: An Innovative Program of the African American Literatures and Cultures Institute
By Joycelyn K. Moody, Sue E. Denman Distinguished Chair in American Literature, University of Texas at San Antonio, and Howard Rambsy II, Associate Professor, Department of English Language and Literature, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

For the last five summers, the two of us have coordinated the African American Literatures and Cultures Institute (AALCI)—a program for college students with interests in eventually pursuing graduate degrees. The Institute convenes on the campus of the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) for the month of June. The program has provided us with important opportunities to enhance undergraduate students’ learning and to orient them toward a broader as well as deeper realm of ideas concerning African American studies. > Full Story

Just published—The Readex Report: April 2015

Just published—The Readex Report: February 2015 (10th Anniversary Issue)

IN OUR 1OTH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE: Civil War-era writers see biblical parallels in the American profile; students use primary sources to refine their research processes; and a heated debate rages on the effects of African-inspired inoculations.

Civil War Biblicism and the Demise of the Confederacy
By Eran Shalev, Senior Lecturer, History Department, Haifa University, Israel
Just published—The Readex Report: February 2015 (10th Anniversary Issue)

Afro-Americana Imprints in the Classroom: A Special Issue of The Readex Report (April 2014)

In this issue: A professor challenges her graduate students to craft historical narratives fueled by discoveries within Afro-Americana Imprints; their inspired articles reveal the potent research potential of a unique resource.

Dirty Searching and Roundabout Paths: Using Afro-Americana Imprints, 1535-1922, in a Master’s Level Seminar
By Susanna Ashton, Professor, American Literature, Clemson University

Would you consider sealing your next envelope with a sticker that read: “Be not partakers in other men’s sins.” More pointedly if you received such a missive, by ripping the seal would you be endorsing or decrying the maxim? I’m not sure, myself. But I was glad to learn about and see the page of gummed Abolitionist labels that my student placed within the discourse of indulgence and sin during the nineteenth century.

Afro-Americana Imprints in the Classroom: A Special Issue of The Readex Report (April 2014)

Just published—The Readex Report: November 2013

IN THIS ISSUE: A pensive primer on the teaching of history research classes, a mysterious presidential embargo exemption sparks envy and anger, and a gifted group of Chinese students succumbs to Western ways.

Librarians and History Instruction: Getting the Most Out of the One-shot Session
By Alexandra Simons, History, Political Science, and Government Documents Librarian, University of Houston

Just published—The Readex Report: November 2013

Just published — The Readex Report: September 2013

IN THIS ISSUE: Scandal mars the mastery of a Native American sporting great; a plucky female editor redefines an iconic southern newspaper; a hulking hoax sparks a sizable 19th-century sensation; a star-crossed sedan slides into obscurity.

"The Great Upheaval": Tracking Jim Thorpe's Swift Fall from Grace after the 1912 Olympics

By Kate Buford, author of Native American Son: The Life and Sporting Legend of Jim Thorpe

One hundred and one years ago this past summer, American Indian athlete Jim Thorpe was acclaimed around the world for winning, by huge margins, both the classic pentathlon and the decathlon at the Fifth Olympiad in Stockholm. The King of Sweden famously declared him “the most wonderful athlete in the world.”

Six months later, on January 22, 1913, a newspaper scoop in ... (read article

Just published — The Readex Report: September 2013

Just published — The Readex Report: February 2013

In this issue: A robust African American resource populated by patrons; the humanity and heartache of an unsung Pulitzer Prize winner; using technology and newfound texts to flesh out classic reference works; and a cross-dressing female marine anchors a 19th-century bestseller.

A Patron-Grown Reference Tool: The Notable Kentucky African Americans Database

By Reinette F. Jones, Librarian, University of Kentucky

The Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (NKAA) is a continuously updated reference tool for studying African Americans in and from Kentucky from the 1700s to the present day. The database is freely available online, and receives well over 100,000 hits each year. It was created by librarians Rob Aken and Reinette Jones, both at the University of Kentucky Libraries. Entries focus on relevant people, places, events, or activities. (read article)

Just published — The Readex Report: February 2013

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