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African American Theater: Jean Blackwell Hutson Research & Reference Division

Guide contains resources about African-American theater. Guide by A J Muhammad.

The Jean Blackwell Hutson Research and Reference Division is located on the C-Level at the Schomburg Center and is where researchers may access published works (including primary and secondary sources) such as play scripts, biographies, periodicals, and databases. No appointment is needed to use resources in this division. An *asterisk in the call number indicates that the item is in the Open Shelves which are located in the Aaron Douglas Reading Room in the Research and Reference Division. Contact this division directly via email at or (212) 491-2218 during regular hours.


Are you looking for plays by Black playwrights that were published in the 19th through the late 20th centuries, but don't know where to start? Try a bibliography of plays!

Periodicals, Databases and Other Resources

The following are few peer reviewed and non-peer reviewed journals that publish articles on Black theater, performance and literature that are available to researchers. Some issues of the journals are available in print and as e-journals and may be accessible with a valid NYPL card.

The following are databases that contain digitized newspapers, scholarly journal articles, and streams/recordings of live theater performances. Databases with the icon of a blue house next to the title may be accessed remotely with your valid NYPL card and four digit pin number. Databases with the icon of a lion next to the title may only be accessed on site at any NYPL branch or research library.

The following are resources that contain information on African American theater in the Research and Reference Division.

Play Script Anthologies

African American Theater History