Pub. date: 2010 | Online Pub. Date: December 15, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971966 | Print ISBN: 9781412940504 | Online ISBN: 9781412971966| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Drake, St. Clair (1911–1990)
Ronald W. Bailey
St. Clair Drake, who trained formally in social anthropology, was an influential educator and committed scholar-activist. One of the first African American professors at mainstream, historically White universities, he was also involved in the birth of the field of African American studies and in helping to build the struggle for civil rights and for African liberation. Because of the breadth and depth of his involvement and his role as chronicler of the Black diaspora, Drake was an important pioneering scholar and contributor to African American education in the United States and abroad. This entry looks at his life and legacy. Drake was born in Suffolk, Virginia, on January 2, 1911. His father, a Baptist minister, was born in Barbados, West Indies; his mother was a schoolteacher. In 1927, he entered the Hampton Institute, where he studied English literature with Professor Allison Davis and was graduated in 1931 with a BS ...