Bound To Stay Bound

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Booklist - 07/01/2016 Beautiful illustrations and short, informative paragraphs come together to tell the history of songs that became American slave songs. The book opens by introducing readers to slave songs and describing how they transformed into spirituals. Thirteen spirituals are featured here, and the descriptions, which include historical, biographical, and biblical context, are all accompanied by evocative paintings. Each paragraph invites readers to notice themes in the paintings that are repeated in the lyrics and raises questions to encourage critical engagement with the text. Wood’s gorgeous paintings are full of saturated colors and evocative imagery—such as luminous blue water resembling stained glass—that tie together the concepts at hand. Sheet music and lyrics are included for each tune, and the back matter contains more lyrics, a comprehensive glossary, and lots of suggestions for further reading. A brief note explains that although slaves sang these songs, that does not mean they felt happy. While excellent for music classes, the wealth of historical context makes this a good pick for lessons on the history of U.S. slavery as well. - Copyright 2016 Booklist.

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