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New Book by Mercer VP Donald Generals Focuses on Booker T. Washington’s Role in American Education

West Windsor, N.J. – According to Donald Generals Jr., Ed.D., Vice President for Academic Affairs at Mercer County Community College, Booker T. Washington, African-American educator, author and orator, has largely been ignored in the history of American education.  In his new book, Booker T. Washington: The Architect of Progressive Education, Generals hopes to set the record straight.

An extension of the dissertation he completed for his doctorate from Rutgers University, Generals notes that Washington’s role has been mostly overlooked.  “Out of a sense of duty to my profession, I felt the need to complete this important American story with this book,” he said.

Examining Washington at the height of his career between the years of 1881 and 1915, when the progressive movement in education was growing, the book presents Washington’s considerable contributions to the development of progressive education in America, while exposing the ignorance of his critics and the distortions that have defined his legacy.

Dr. Guy Generals, author of Booker T.
Washington: The Architect of Progressive Education.

According to Generals, Washington’s critics have portrayed him as a conservative compromiser, willing to appease whites at the expense of African American rights and social development.  “Viewed as an accommodator, Washington is pitted against W.E.B. Dubois, who is seen as the key figure in the promotion and advancement of African Americans.  This negative image of Washington distorts his historical significance as an African American leader and American educator,” Generals said.

Generals believes that Washington was, in fact, a truly enlightened thinker and highly effective educator who provided educational opportunities and upward social mobility for thousands of African Americans.  “From the ashes of slavery and a Jim Crow South, his vision for Tuskegee University stands as a lasting testament to the man’s genius and incredible foresight,” Generals said.
The book is published by Strategic Book Publishing and Rights Agency (2013).  It is available at www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com.

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