Toronto, Ontario; Naperville, Illinois; Atlanta, Georgia: J. L. Nichols & Company, (copyright 1903). Hardcover. Item #1029
8vo 8" - 9" tall; 8 5/8” x 6½”. Tan cloth. Pp. [Double-sided frontis], [1-7], 8, [9-10],11-438, [blank], with 15 additional double-sided illustrated plates interspersed. Good minus: shaken with frontispiece fully detached; titles and cover design rubbed; tiny ink mark on front cover; inscription on front free endpaper; corners bumped; minimal foxing; Table of Contents partially detached. Written to provide premarital advice on “the hygiene of sexual life, ” Professor and Mrs. J. W. Gibson offered relationship information for black readers ready for the next stage in their adult lives. The authors espoused social purity, as witnessed by sections discussing “Secret Sin or Masturbation” for men, and “Self-Pollution” for women. Anecdotal evidence describing the role of heredity are emphasized clearly through several illustrated plates sprinkled throughout the book. Images depict black people in various situations, some representing wholesome family life, others representing undesirable consequences related to poor decisions. One illustration entitled, “Celebrities-The Fruit of Purity, Industry and Education” shows black people who are the epitome of virtuous living and good breeding. It is contrasted with pictures of men on the verso of that same plate who were unfortunately labeled, “Blood-Marks of Crime-Progeny of Depraved and Ignorant Parents. ” If that was not enough to deter a person from contaminating one's character, perhaps the contrasting images of “Children of Pure and Intelligent Parents” versus “Children of the Poor and Uneducated” could inspire the chastity the authors are advocating, until the most suitable mate comes along. Internet searches discovered information in the book, Liberating Language: Sites of Rhetorical Education in Nineteenth-Century Black America by Shirley Wilson Logan (2008) , that the authors writing this book for black readers were white. A curious study of premarital advice for young adults at the turn of the century, offered by white authors using images of black people to illustrate both positive and negative circumstances. This item is offered by Langdon Manor Books, LLC, antiquarian booksellers. Please do not hesitate to contact us for additional information and/or photos and we will respond promptly. We package our items carefully, ship daily, and have a no hassle returns policy--your satisfaction is guaranteed. We are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA) , the International League of Antiquarian Booksllers (ILAB) and the Independent Online Booksellers Association (IOBA) and adhere to their rules of ethics.