A history of tap dancing explores its role as an art form that creates its own music, tracing its origins in African traditions and other folk dance forms, its growth on the stage and screen, and its reinvention by a new generation. Siebert, a dance critic for The New York Times
, illuminates the cultural exchange between blacks and whites over centuries, the interplay of imitation and theft, as well as the moving story of African-Americans in show business, wielding enormous influence as they grapple with the pain and pride of a complicated legacy.
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An award-winning writer traces the lesser-known story of Louis Till, the father of iconic civil rights martyr Emmet Till, tying their fates together to reveal how the father was wrongly convicted for rape and murder before being executed by the Army a decade before his son's murder.