Study Finds That Blacks Are Rarely Featured in College-Level Political Science Textbooks

The American Political Science Association’s Standing Committee on the Status of Blacks in the Profession has published a study in the organization’s journal, PS: Political Science & Politics, on the extent that blacks are portrayed in the discipline’s textbooks. The committee reviewed 27 different college textbooks to determine if they included discussions of issues of importance to African Americans and whether they contained opinions by black political experts or citations of their works.

The results showed that most textbooks had chapters on the civil rights movement, but that otherwise black views and opinions were largely nonexistent in these textbooks. The study concludes that “African Americans’ active participation in America’s political development has been treated as a separate entity.”

The study was authored by Sherri L. Wallace, an associate professor of political science at the University of Louisville, and Marcus D. Allen, an assistant professor of political science at Wheaton College in Massachusetts.