Huge New Reference Work Contains Thousands of Biographies of Notable African Americans

The eight-volume African-American National Biography will be officially released in early February by Oxford University Press. The reference books contain more than 4,000 biographies of notable African Americans in multiple fields of interest from sports and entertainment to education, law, and business. Notable black people from history as well as African Americans alive today are included in the new reference work.

Each biography is 900 to 3,000 words in length and is written by a team of accomplished scholars. The entire eight-volume set has more than 5,500 printed pages and carries a list price of $795. The online edition of the African-American National Biography will be continually updated with biographies being added when warranted.

The project has been in the works for a decade under the direction of general editors Henry Louis Gates Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University, and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, professor of history and African-American studies at Harvard University.