Opinions on African American

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This article is about the U.S. population of Americans of African ancestry. For the population of recent African origins, see African immigration to the United States. For the African diaspora throughout the Americas, see Afro-American peoples of the Americas.

African Americans, also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans, is an ethnic group of citizens or residents of the United States with total or partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa. The term may also be used to include only those individuals who are descended from African slaves. As a compound adjective the term is usually hyphenated as African-American.

African Americans constitute the second largest racial and ethnic minority in the United States. Most African Americans are of West and Central African descent and are descendants of enslaved blacks within the boundaries of the present United States. However, immigrants from African, Caribbean, Central American, and South American nations and their descendants may or may not also self-identify with the term.

African-American history starts in the 16th century, with Africans forcibly taken as slaves to Spanish America, and in the 17th century with African slaves taken to English colonies in North America. After the founding of the United States, black people continued to be enslaved and treated as inferiors. These circumstances were changed by Reconstruction, development of the black community, participation in the great military conflicts of the United States, the elimination of racial segregation, and the Civil Rights Movement. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected president of the United States.


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