Reparations activists William Sandy Darity and A. Kristen Mullen have long worked to bring awareness to the issue of reparations for Native Black America.
Earlier this year, the husband-and-wife team released what many consider to be the pre-eminent book on reparations. That book, “From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century,” has won a prestigious award.
The 2020 Sam Ragan Old North State Award for Nonfiction is a North Carolina Book Award presented by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association, the state’s oldest civic organization, according to a press release.
Darity is the Samuel DuBose Cook Distinguished Professor of Public policy at Duke University. Mullen is an author, folklorist and museum consultant. They live in Durham, North Carolina.
In a virtual acceptance speech, Darity talked about his North Carolina roots. “Both of my parents were born and raised in the old North state. And I have ancestors who were enslaved in North Carolina on both sides of my family,” he said.
He talked about the need for reparations. “We must emphasize that the case for reparations that we make in the pages of ‘From Here to Equality’ is not limited to slavery. Indeed we must place on the account for the debt that is owed to Black American descendants of U.S. slavery in addition the nearly century-long period of legal segregation in the United States American apartheid or what we refer to colloquially as the Jim Crow era.”
Reparations must also address the continued inequality and racism Black Americans face, Darity added.
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Congratulations flooded Twitter.
“This is well deserved. I’m currently reading and taking my time with this one. So far, great! So much knowledge!,” one user wrote.
Another posted, “Congratulations & thank you and @IrstenKMullen for your tireless advocacy for pure reparations.”
Mullen and Darity said they are proud to be recognized in their home state.