Is African American Capitalized in Sentences?

According to a majority of American manuals, terms referring to ethnic groups must be capitalized since they are proper nouns. This includes the phrase African American.

The term African American is widely accepted as a color term referring to an ethnic group whose members are of African descent. So, the answer to the question “Is African American Capitalized in a sentence?” is yes.

When African American is used in a main heading or title, it should be capitalized. An example of such a title is “Roots: The Saga of an American Family” when used in a book title.

Is Black Capitalized?

Historically, the word “black” was lowercase even when referring to people who identify as Black, including those in the African diaspora and within Africa. However, the AP Stylebook has recently made a change to capitalize the word “Black” when referring to this group of people.

Do you hyphenate African American?

Sometimes people hyphenate the word African-American, which is also grammatically correct. Other synonyms of African American that people usually capitalize include: Black American, and Afro-American. There are no exceptions where the compound word African-American is not capitalized. Some people capitalize the word African and forget to capitalize the second part “American” especially when they hyphenate the compound word. Remember to always capitalize both words before and after the hyphen.
For more title capitalization questions, use our free title capitalization tool here.


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