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Library Journal Review
There has been an increase in the need for statistical information on Afro-Americans and other minorities. More often than not, librarians and other information specialists need to use a number of different sources to locate information and statistics related to health care, crime, education, business and economic affairs and other activities. This compilation by Horton and Smith (respectively director of social sciences and head librarian, Fisk Univ.) helps to rectify the problem by presenting statistical information in a useful format. Sources are provided with each chart and at the end of the book. Some include in-depth address information. Charts are also indexed by page and chart number, which is quite useful. The only problem with this source is that some of the chart titles are not very descriptive, and users will need to read the notes at the bottom of the chart to determine if this is the information that they need. In spite of this minor drawback, this is a useful work that will find a home in all libraries.--Danna C. Bell, Marymount Univ. Lib., Arlington, Va. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
A much needed work of statistical data about African Americans, including some comparisons with Asian, white, and Hispanic Americans. Horton and Smith (Fisk University) gathered data from some 90 disparate, original sources to compile their book. They urge readers to use it as a beginning point and to consult those original sources for more data. Among the 19 broad categories examined are those termed "Attitudes, Values, and Behavior," "Health and Medical Care," and "Income, Spending and Wealth." Many numbered subcategories of data, primarily in tabular form and arranged alphabetically, account for most of the text. The alphabetical arrangement sometimes lends itself to inconsistent and unrelated grouping of subtopics (cf. p. 324-330). Some indexed terms do not exactly match the tables they refer to. Moreover, Table 478 is not included in the index, and the table on African-American mayors in cities over 50,000 is dated. The Metropolitan Area Fact Book: A Statistical Portrait of Blacks and Whites in Urban America ed. by Katherine McFate (1988) can be compared in some ways to the work under review. Although not so comprehensive as Horton and Smith's book, it examines some of the same variables with a slightly different focus. Concentrating on 48 of America's largest metropolitan areas with black populations exceeding 100,000 each, it looks at, for example, "Residency Patterns," "Labor Force Participation," and "Income and Earnings." Although organizationally weak, the Horton and Smith book should be used as a beginning point for statistics about black Americans. More statistical data can be gleaned by using both of the works mentioned. -J. C. Phillips, University of Toledo