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Perspective Articles Guidelines

Revised August 6, 2012

1) Each Perspectives article should be approximately 1,500 words.  The Perspectives article should be written for a broad, popular audience although your work will likely be seen by scholars as well.  Your article should focus on a unique aspect of the historical event you are describing or your own special vantage point as its chronicler.  If you are writing about an individual that you knew, you should emphasize your relationship with the person and the ways in which you were influenced by her or his values or actions.  If you are writing as an eyewitness to an event, please recount the event as you saw it, taking into consideration your own attitudes (and biases) concerning it.  If you are presenting the synopsis of a forthcoming or recently published book that you wrote, draw from the material in the book but also describe why you wrote it, the challenges you faced in the research and writing, and the insights that BlackPast.org visitors will gain from reading it. 

2) Perspectives articles do not have footnotes or endnotes but you may list sources including your own work.  List no more than three sources.  Try to avoid Internet sources.

3) Avoid information that cannot be documented in your article such as “her career was destroyed by white racism” or “he was the greatest athlete, musician, artist, etc., of all time.”  Do not use your article primarily as a forum for your own editorial comments about people or events.

4)  Each article should follow the standard BlackPast.org website style.  That means the entry title is in bold type at the left margin.  Paragraphs should not be indented.  Book or journal titles that appear in the body of your article or in the Sources section should be italicized.  

Sources should follow this style:  

For Books: John Smith, Black History (New York: New Publishing Company, 1999) 

For Articles: John Smith, “Article in Journal,” Journal Title 54:2 (Fall 2004) 

For Websites: http://www.blackhistory.com  If you cite websites, do make sure the

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