But We Have No Country: The 1851 Christiana, Pennsylvania Resistance
Book Description (Annotation)
Forbes discusses the rhetoric of redemptive violence used by 19th century African Americans who resorted to force to gain basic civil rights in the United States and analyzes the 1851 Christiana, Pennsylvania Resistance, led by William Parker who asserted that blacks "had no country" because they were not protected by U.S laws and statutes. Her text relies heavily on Parker's narrative of his life and the incident, "The Freedman's Story," the only written and published account by a participant (reprinted in the appendix). His version of events gives readers insight on why the resisters took drastic measures in the face of overwhelming odds. The Christiana Resisters tested the basic tenets of American democracy and law, especially the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law.
About the AuthorElla Forbes is retired and living in Central America. During her academic career she was associate professor of African American Studies at Temple University, where she earned her Ph.D.
Dr. Forbes scholarly work focuses on resistance activities in the African American community, and she is the author of two books, African American Women During the Civil War and But We Have No Country: The 1851 Christiana, Pennsylvania Resistance, co-author of the forthcoming title, The Color Line Revisited: Readings in African American History, and contributor to several academic journals. Forbes taught courses in African American history, mass media and the black community, African American social and political thought, black women, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X.
In addition to teaching, Ella has worked as a consultant on African American history and educational projects, including conducting research for the Goodman versus Lukens Steel Company discrimination suit (Pennsylvania). Her community service involved serving as an officer of the United States Colored Troops Memorial Committee, a nonprofit cultural organization in Philadelphia that provided Civil War interpretive history programs and exhibits for Independence National Park (on July 4), three regional branches of the Free Library of Philadelphia, various academic institutions, the New Jersey State Aquarium, the American Women's Heritage Society at Belmont Mansion, among others.