Inner City Studies - Frances Cress Welsing
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Dr. Ivan Gladstone Van Sertima (26 January 1935 – 25 May 2009) was an associate professor of Africana Studies at Rutgers University in the United States. He is best known for his Olmec alternative origin speculations, a brand of pre-Columbian contact theory, which he proposed in his book They Came Before Columbus (1976). While his Olmec theory has "spread widely in the African American community, both lay and scholarly", it was mostly ignored in Mesoamericanist scholarship, or else dismissed as Afrocentric pseudohistory to the effect of "robbing native American cultures". Dr. Ivan Van Sertima was born January 26, 1935, in Kitty Village, Guyana. He was one of the most brilliant scholars and historians to hail from there; he belonged on the same podium as the late Guyanese scholar and union organizer, Dr. Walter Rodney; and American giants such as Dr. John Henrik Clarke and Martin Bernal. Van Sertima was also a linguist and anthropologist.