Every day this month, the Center for Black Educator Development, in partnership with Phillys7thWard.org and Citizen Ed, will highlight a Black Educator Hall of Famer. But, don’t forget, e’ry month is Black History Month…February is just the Blackest.
Today, our featured Black Educator is Horace Mann Bond.
Horace Mann Bond was born on November 8, 1904 in Nashville, Tennessee. Bond was the son of college educated parents; his mother was a schoolteacher.
Bond, one of seven children, excelled in school—he was a high school graduate at the age of fourteen and by nineteen, Horace had graduated from Lincoln University with honors. Horace obtained his Masters (1926) and Doctorate (1936) respectively from the University of Chicago. Bond went on to teach at numerous HBCSs including Langston University, Alabama State University, Dillard University and Fisk University.
Bond is known for his scholarship debating the racism baked into so-called intelligence tests and how racists ascribed low I.Q. to people of African descent. When nearly 100 Southern politicians signed the Southern Manifesto in an attempt resist the U.S. Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board decision, Bond responded with numerous critiques of the manifesto; not the least of which claimed that Black people had a lower I.Q. and capacity to learn when compared to white.
In his seminal work, “Racially Stuffed Shirts and Other Enemies of Mankind”: Horace Mann Bond’s parody of Segregationist Psychology in the 1950s, Bond accepted the grounds offered by the segregationists and used their own arguments against them in a clever and effective reductio ad absurdum argument that undercut segregationist claims while engaging in their terms of debate.
Bond also remarked that the most vocal of the southern congressmen, a representative for Georgia, had attended a college which ranked 201 out of 205 American colleges in its average I.Q.
In addition, Bond authored numerous texts including, Education for Freedom: A History of Lincoln University, The Education of the Negro in the American Social Order, and The Education of the Negro in Alabama. Bond also served as president of the Fort Valley State College in Georgia from 1939 to 1945, president of Lincoln University in Pennsylvania from 1945 to 1957, and as dean of the school of education at Atlanta University until his death in 1972.
Bond is also the father of legendary activist, former Georgia Congressman and former chairman of the NAACP, Julian Bond.
Bond’s career exemplified the dilemma of the Black educator in the segregated South during the 1930s and 1940s: despising segregation and quietly struggling to abolish it, while still helping to improve education for persons of African descent within its confines.
Horace Mann Bond; a member of the Black Educator Hall of Fame.
For more information on Horace Mann Bond, visit the following site.