Exploring the contributions of John G. Jackson to African historiography

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ETD Collection for AUC Robert W. Woodruff Library

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http://digitalcommons.auctr.edu/dissertations/1353, http://digitalcommons.auctr.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2928&context=dissertations
Usher, C. Anthony
DigitalCommons@Robert W. Woodruff Library, Atlanta University Center
African Languages and Societies, American Studies
thesis / dissertation description
This thesis offers a comprehensive examination of the intellectual contributions of John Glover Jackson, an African American historian. Jackson, similiar to many other African American scholars, is self trained in the field of African history. This self training is a crucial element in this presentation for it is an attempt to present the autodidact's efforts and contributions as valid. This attempt reviews the archeological, anthropological, and cultural evidence presented by Jackson relating to his interpretations of man, God, and civilization. The methodology utilized in this research consists mainly of examining secondary data. Primary materials include interviews, video recordings, and recorded lectures. Critiques of the scholarly content of these materials are included in the assessment of Jackson's work. Iconographic, linguistic and ethnological evidence will be presented as interpreted by Jackson. The findings demonstrate that Jackson's contributions were virtually ignored. The reasons for this disregard are several. The dissenting nature of his presentation, his atheist reasoning and his lack of diplomacy contributed to his neglect. The results of this study carry wide reaching implications in the different fields of historical research. An Important finding, for example, is that formal university training is not an absolute prerequisite in the writing of history. Of greater significance is the evidence presented and the integrity of the historian's scholarship. The autodidact and the formally trained scholar have much to offer historiography. Neither can be ignored if honest scholastic advancements is intended. This exploring of the contributions of the self taught scholar, John G. Jackson, attempts to support such a conclusion.

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