The first African American fraternities and sororities were established at the turn of the twentieth century to encourage leadership, racial pride, and academic excellence among black college students confronting the legacy of slavery and the indignities of Jim Crow segregation. Black Greek-letter organizations were also created to foster a sense of community among African American students on college campuses, and among their ranks are legendary artists, politicians, theologians, inventors, intellectuals, educators, civil rights leaders, and athletes. Nikki Giovanni, Cornel West, Martin Luther King Jr., Shaquille O'Neal, Toni Morrison, Bill Cosby, and W.E.B. DuBois are all members of black fraternities and sororities, and these groups continue to have a strong presence on campuses today. Offering a comprehensive overview of the historical, cultural, political, and social circumstances that propelled the creation of these groups, this collection of original essays references the...

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