The Color of Man Author:Robert Cohen Kirkus Reviews: THE FAMILY OF MAN is the obvious progenitor, both as an album of images of the world's people and as a concept: brotherhood. Here, however, the handsome layout and inspiring pictures are the setting for an explanation of what color consists of, how it is inherited (and how variations are transmitted), how differences arose and wh... more »y they persisted; and also why the Americas exhibited peculiarities and the effects of slavery and migration. The last chapter, reinforced by the afterword, deals with prejudice and ideas of 'inferiority" by demonstrating that each presumed stigma (low scores on intelligence tests, bad health, high crime rates) is the result of poverty. Throughout, the text is painstaking in leading up to and away from each assertion, scrupulous in distinquishing between fact and supposition.
It is easy, but not really relevant to say that, except in the first chapter on the cause of color, the very fine photographs can be enjoyed without the text, and the text can be understood without the pictures: if the child does not always grasp the conceptual connection between the two (which is sometimes quite subtle), he cannot help responding to the vitality of diversity, and quite directly to the strong Blacks. In a book that is intended to promote pride and dispel prejudice, that is a considerable contribution.« less