"On Centrality of Black History" by Jeffrey B. Perry, "The Record," submitted February 3, published February 8, 2002, p.90.
On centrality of black history In March 1927, Harlem's Hubert Harrison, the brilliant and much-neglected writer, author, and social activist who is described in J. A. Rogers' "World's Great Men of Color" as "the foremost Afro-American intellect of his time," pointed out that the idea of a "Negro Literary Renaissance" overlooked "the stream of literary and artistic products which have flowed uninterruptedly from Negro writers from 1850 to the present." I can appreciate the buzz value in Staff Writer Paul Johnson's Black History Month piece "A second Harlem Renaissance" (Page A-l, Feb. 3) and like many of its points. I also appreciate the fact that The Record is doing its daily box on black figures during Black History Month (February). However, I hope that such coverage of African-American history and writers will not downsize when February ends. I truly believe that African-American history and African-American contributions are central to understanding American history and that all people in this country are better served by deeper and more continuously developed understanding of black history and black contributions. Perhaps, one day, Record readers will even be told about Hubert Harrison. Jeffrey B. Perry Westwood, Feb. 3