Book Review: Becoming Free, Becoming Black: Race, Freedom, and Law in Cuba, Virginia, and Louisiana Book by Alejandro de la Fuente and Ariela Julie Gross


It was an emotional read for me, especially growing up in the New Orleans public school system and now knowing how much of our history was left out. I hated history because of all the important faces in my history book did not bare my skin tone. I was suspended for defacing, aka coloring the faces of people brown in my 7th-grade history book. For years I was taught that the Spanish and British fought for our freedom while my ancestors worked the fields. If it weren’t for my grandmother and mother telling us stories, TV movies like Roots and attending college, I wouldn’t have known the truth about my ancestors. Reading Becoming Free, Becoming Black proves that the enslaved were not enslaved in mind, nor did they accept being enslaved.

Circle Food Store African American Black Owned New Orleans

Update on New Orleans only Black-Owned grocery store, Circle Food Store: Sold

We wonder why black businesses have a hard time keeping their doors open. We tend to blame every other race, the government and the list goes on, but there is a separation happening amongst us. If we were to commit to supporting one another then maybe we can keep those trillions of dollars cycling within our families and communities. But that would mean we would have to stop viewing each other as competition and rid ourselves of jealousy. Our own jealousies, competitiveness, unwillingness to support one another and pettiness with other black people is what’s keeping us from moving forward.