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(Blake) J. Herman papers
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  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Preferred Citation
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Content Description
  • Related Materials

  • Contributing Institution: University of California, Santa Cruz
    Title: J. Herman Blake papers
    Creator: Blake, J. Herman
    Identifier/Call Number: MS.415
    Physical Description: 12 Linear Feet (13 boxes)
    Physical Description: 0.29 GB (11 digital files)
    Date (inclusive): 1949-2018
    Language of Material: English

    Conditions Governing Access

    Collection is open for research. Audiovisual media is unavailable until reformatted. Contact Special Collections in advance for information regarding access.
    Digital files are available in the UCSC Special Collections and Archives reading room. Some files may require reformatting before they can be accessed. Technical limitations may hinder the Library's ability to provide access to some digital files. Access to digital files on original carriers is prohibited; users must request to view access copies. Contact Special Collections and Archives in advance to request access to digital files.

    Conditions Governing Use

    Property rights for this collection reside with the University of California. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. The publication or use of any work protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use for research or educational purposes requires written permission from the copyright owner. Responsibility for obtaining permissions, and for any use rests exclusively with the user. For more information on copyright or to order a reproduction, please visit the UCSC Special Collections and Archives website.

    Preferred Citation

    J. Herman Blake papers. MS 415. Special Collections and Archives, University Library, University of California, Santa Cruz.

    Biographical / Historical

    John Herman Blake was born in Mount Vernon, New York on March 15, 1934. After serving in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, J. Herman Blake earned his B.A. degree in sociology from New York University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley. In 1966, Blake was recruited by Founding Chancellor Dean McHenry to teach sociology at Cowell College at the newly opened University of California, Santa Cruz. He became the first African American on the University of California Santa Cruz faculty and remained at UCSC for eighteen years. Dr. Blake is beloved at UCSC, both as a charismatic, rigorous, and brilliant teacher/mentor and as the visionary leader who founded UCSC's seventh college, Oakes, and served as its first provost. Oakes College emerged from a larger history of grassroots education in transformational politics in the United States centered in the Citizenship School Movement in the Sea Islands of South Carolina and the Highlander Folk School in Appalachia.
    After leaving UC Santa Cruz, Blake served as the President of Tougaloo College until 1987; held positions at Swarthmore College; served as the Vice Chancellor at Indiana University; and was the Director of African American Studies at Iowa State University. In 2008, the Medical University of South Carolina appointed Blake as the first Humanities Scholar in Residence. He retired from the Medical University of South Carolina in December of 2014. Throughout his career, Dr. Blake has focused on students of color in higher education, urban militants in the African American community, and social change and community development in rural and urban African American communities. His publications include over fifty full-length contributions and a book, the autobiography of Huey P. Newton, Revolutionary Suicide. He has been awarded six honorary degrees and two presidential medals.
    Professor Blake has devoted much of his life to preserving Gullah culture. He was the founding director of the Sea Islands Institute at the University of South Carolina, Beaufort, and formerly served as the Executive Director of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor.
    - Cameron Vanderscoff and Irene Reti. Text adapted from Look'n M' Face and Hear M' Story": An Online Exhibit about Professor J. Herman Blake  
    See also "Look'n M' Face and Hear M' Story": An Oral History with Professor J. Herman Blake.   Oral history by Cameron Vanderscoff, 2014. (LD781.S518 B58 2014)

    Content Description

    Collection includes writings, speeches, correspondence, photographs, administrative records, research files, and audio recordings that document Blake's involvement in the founding of Oakes College at UC Santa Cruz and his research on marginalized students in higher education and the South Carolina Sea Islands.

    Related Materials

    J. Herman Blake and Emily L. Moore papers (Manuscript Collection No. 1357) at Emory University's Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Faculty papers