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Six Black Presidents: Black Blood : White Masks USA Paperback – Jan 1 1993


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Pik2 Pubns (January 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1880187000
  • ISBN-13: 978-1880187005
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 20 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 318 g
  • Average Customer Review: 1.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By chefdevergue on Aug. 23 2003
Format: Paperback
Set firmly in the afrocentrist tradition of GGM James, JH Clarke, and JA Rogers, this junk is a classic example of pseudo-history. Again and again, we see speculation and rumor ("it has been said" appears again and again in the text) presented later in the book as established fact. Repeatedly, the only citations for the assertions made refer to other afrocentrist authors, particularly Rogers. Very little use of legitimate primary sources is made; evidently using archival material, in the eyes of the author, only plays into the hands of the conspiritorial White Establishment.
The author justifies her deplorable historical standards by babbling something about "ourstory," implying that "history" is only for white folks. "Ourstory," because it somehow empowers black folks, is evidently exempt from any sort of academic standards. Anything goes, apparently.
Not only are the academic standards totally lacking, but the book at times borders on incoherence. Herbal remedies pop up, seemingly out of nowhere, in the middle of narratives unrelated to the remedies. The author frequently rants about the evils that white folks do, in jarring digressions that serve only to detract from the overall narrative.
The real shame is that the subject of people of black heritage "passing for white" is indeed a subject that deserves serious study. In fact, serious scholarship has been devoted to the subject. More Americans than we realize have artfully concealed, sometimes from their own families, their true ethnic heritage. People within the same family will choose to live either as white or black, and it is intriguing how this shapes their descendants perceptions of themselves.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Aug. 31 2002
Format: Paperback
Sorry, but I have to offer a dissenting opinion. When J.A. Rogers wrote the Five Black Presidents--that was a landmark work. This book is not. Let me explain why. First, Dr. BaKhufu's feelings about whites mars the book. She can't stop letting her anger intrude on the narrative. Second, she makes a lot of mistakes that would be insignificant by themselves but put together make the book look bad. First, Thomas Jeffeson was born in Goochland County, not Coochland. His boyhood home was Tuckahoe, not Tockahoe. Sally Hemmings was not auctioned off; she was set free by Martha Jefferson and allowed to stay in Virginia with her sons as free people by an act of the state legislature. Robert Lincoln was predjudiced, not predjudice...The author really should've gone to a proofreader and fact checker.
Several chapters are simply weird. The author's poems and even a herbal remedy for hoarse throats are scattered throughout the book and she goes off on these wild tangents. One minute you'll be reading about Abe Lincoln, and in the very next she's accusing Eleanor Roosevelt of being a lesbian. The sad thing is that the book doesn't settle down and get serious until the middle. The section on Harding, who probably had black ancestry is very good. The chapter on Eisenhower is pretty good but other than a picture of his mother there is no credible proof offered that he was black.
As a black person and a historian I know that the truth of history is often not what we were taught in school. Lies have been told about black people and our contributions to this country but that doesn't justify making up a mythos of our own. So, to sum up I have to say that this book doesn't cut it as serious history (except for the Harding section) but it does do one thing: It makes the reader curious about J.A. Rogers and his books.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 18 reviews
83 of 88 people found the following review helpful
I'm So Sorry Aug. 31 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Sorry, but I have to offer a dissenting opinion. When J.A. Rogers wrote the Five Black Presidents--that was a landmark work. This book is not. Let me explain why. First, Dr. BaKhufu's feelings about whites mars the book. She can't stop letting her anger intrude on the narrative. Second, she makes a lot of mistakes that would be insignificant by themselves but put together make the book look bad. First, Thomas Jeffeson was born in Goochland County, not Coochland. His boyhood home was Tuckahoe, not Tockahoe. Sally Hemmings was not auctioned off; she was set free by Martha Jefferson and allowed to stay in Virginia with her sons as free people by an act of the state legislature. Robert Lincoln was predjudiced, not predjudice...The author really should've gone to a proofreader and fact checker.
Several chapters are simply weird. The author's poems and even a herbal remedy for hoarse throats are scattered throughout the book and she goes off on these wild tangents. One minute you'll be reading about Abe Lincoln, and in the very next she's accusing Eleanor Roosevelt of being a lesbian. The sad thing is that the book doesn't settle down and get serious until the middle. The section on Harding, who probably had black ancestry is very good. The chapter on Eisenhower is pretty good but other than a picture of his mother there is no credible proof offered that he was black.
As a black person and a historian I know that the truth of history is often not what we were taught in school. Lies have been told about black people and our contributions to this country but that doesn't justify making up a mythos of our own. So, to sum up I have to say that this book doesn't cut it as serious history (except for the Harding section) but it does do one thing: It makes the reader curious about J.A. Rogers and his books.
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Disappointing, at best. Nov. 14 2000
By Rose Scarlet - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I give this book one star, only because I cannot give it fewer. I was at first intrigued by the title, The Six Black Presidents. It sounded so interesting! But I can easily say that I have never been more disappointed in a book.
With our country being such a rich mixture of cultures, there can be little doubt that at least a few of our leaders have come from other than pure Caucasian stock. What a treasure it would have been to have a book about the real history of the White House residents. But instead of giving us little-known tidbits of history, Auset Bakhufu does little more than raise questions. And what's more, ideas that she first presents to us as a question ("Could it be...?" "Perhaps..." "It has been said...") are treated as facts throughout the rest of the book.
Auset Bakhufu's anger leaps off of every page. That's fine, I guess... a lot of people write books because something has made them angry. But it was disappointing that the writing was so poor and her tone so hostile.
Bakhufu, instead of presenting evidence that some of our presidents have had African blood, presents only rumors and innuendo. Some of these men fathered children with Black mistresses, some were considered insane, and some had bad marriages. That doesn't make them African-American--it makes them human. Her 'psychobiographies,' as she calls them, are nothing more than character assassinations. She had nothing positve to say about any of her subjects. Also, no direct evidence or documentation was presented that actually proved any of her claims of a U.S. president having had an African heritage. You would expect to see at least one birth certificate, diary entry, or family Bible record in a book about who the true parents of our presidents were.
One of the most annoying aspects of the book is Bakhufu's tendency to make up her own words to use in the place of standard words she does not like. For instance, 'history' becomes 'ourstory', and 'pass-for-white' becomes 'fail-for-white', etc. The author also defines these terms parenthetically each time they are used, rather than defining them once and trusting us to be intelligent enough to remember them. I would like to have seen the Chicago Manual of Style in her list of references.
Although Bakhufu does include references, I seriously question their reliability (i.e. mud-slinging election campaign material from opposing parties/candidates). She appears to have used her references to back up what she already thought, instead of using them to come to a full understanding of her topic of research.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Another wish unfulfilled Aug. 14 2005
By S. J. Koblentz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
In reading Six Black Presidents: Black Blood : White Masks USA I was struck by the need of the author to acquire the men that are reviewed in the book. These men are people, they are not posessions, however I felt distinctly that I was being asked to give someone away for the purposes of supporting the theories put forth in this work.

While the content is compelling, if true, the lack of primary evidence and fact overshadows this work.

As another reviewer has pointed out, there is a heavy reliance on phrases such as "It is thought..." and "It is believed..." Qualifying key sentences with these pharses detracts from the reliability of the material as fact. There also seems to be a reliance on "Post Hoc Ergo Promptor Hoc" (Therefore, because of this) reasoning, which while persuasive, is faulty.

Structurally, the writing style of the author develops a cadance, seldom stumbling, but often bringing this reader to reread portion of the book to see if the mind was carried past a detail that would add clarity to the argument.

While not a bad example of theory, however, the author fails to sell the reader on the premise that these men have enough identifiers to clearly identify them as being Afro-Centric in the ancestry, or in their thoughts.
41 of 56 people found the following review helpful
Pseudo-history at its absolute worst Aug. 23 2003
By chefdevergue - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Set firmly in the afrocentrist tradition of GGM James, JH Clarke, and JA Rogers, this junk is a classic example of pseudo-history. Again and again, we see speculation and rumor ("it has been said" appears again and again in the text) presented later in the book as established fact. Repeatedly, the only citations for the assertions made refer to other afrocentrist authors, particularly Rogers. Very little use of legitimate primary sources is made; evidently using archival material, in the eyes of the author, only plays into the hands of the conspiritorial White Establishment.
The author justifies her deplorable historical standards by babbling something about "ourstory," implying that "history" is only for white folks. "Ourstory," because it somehow empowers black folks, is evidently exempt from any sort of academic standards. Anything goes, apparently.
Not only are the academic standards totally lacking, but the book at times borders on incoherence. Herbal remedies pop up, seemingly out of nowhere, in the middle of narratives unrelated to the remedies. The author frequently rants about the evils that white folks do, in jarring digressions that serve only to detract from the overall narrative.
The real shame is that the subject of people of black heritage "passing for white" is indeed a subject that deserves serious study. In fact, serious scholarship has been devoted to the subject. More Americans than we realize have artfully concealed, sometimes from their own families, their true ethnic heritage. People within the same family will choose to live either as white or black, and it is intriguing how this shapes their descendants perceptions of themselves. This is a very important topic, but the author, with her rampant speculation (she seems to believe that every single white American is hiding a black ancestor somewhere), only serves to undermine the scholarship surrounding this subject.
This is a worthless book in every respect. It isn't even good for a cheap laugh. Please do not regard this as good history in any way, because it is more about the author's personal agenda than responsible history.
27 of 37 people found the following review helpful
Clinton ain't the first Black president Sept. 27 1999
By M KIRK-DUGGAN - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Last week in a TV interview, President Clinton said that he was probably the first Black President. Just like VP Gore claims to have invented the Internet when he couldn't tell a computer utility (my book: 1972) from the Arpanet.
This hard-to-find tome sets the record straight: At most Clinton is the 7th or 8th African American President.
Although Tom Jefferson's paternity via Sally Hennings of Black descendents has been established via DNA, this book points out that Jefferson's father was half-black and half Indian (?). It also notes that George Washington was a literal father of his country, having impregnated one of his beatiful African slaves. Next in line, in accord with the American notion that any significant African blood = Black, is Andrew Jackson, whose natural father was an African slave, since his namesake parent had died before Andy was conceived. Abe Lincoln and Warren Harding have long been rumored to have African ancestry. The author presents a strong case for claiming Dwight Eisenhower as African. Whilst the case is not convincing, there is credible evidence that Cal Coolidge of New England Indian ancestry makes this honor list. Her last chapter of this 1993 book more than hints that our current president is African American, possibly the 7th or 8th {if one includes silent Cal). One also notes that the Jan. 1999 printing was the 9th printing, so there are lots of people using this valuable text. The excellent bibliography makes this a most valuable reference. One hopes for many many reprints in the years to come.

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