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Journal of Black Sexuality and Relationships

Vol. 1 (2014) through current issue

The Journal of Black Sexuality and Relationships is devoted to addressing the epistemological, ontological, and social construction of sexual expression and relationships of persons within the African diaspora. The journal seeks to take into account the transhistorical substrates that subsume behavioral, affective, and cognitive functioning of persons of African descent as well as those who educate or clinically serve this important population.

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Authentically Black and Truly Catholic

The Rise of Black Catholicism in the Great Migration

Matthew J. Cressler

Explores the contentious debates among Black Catholics about the proper relationship between religious practice and racial identity 
 
Chicago has been known as the Black Metropolis. But before the Great Migration, Chicago could have been called the Catholic Metropolis, with its skyline defined by parish spires as well as by industrial smoke stacks and skyscrapers. This book uncovers the intersection of the two. Authentically Black and Truly Catholic traces the developments within the church in Chicago to show how Black Catholic activists in the 1960s and 1970s made Black Catholicism as we know it today.                                               
The sweep of the Great Migration brought many Black migrants face-to-face with white missionaries for the first time and transformed the religious landscape of the urban North. The hopes migrants had for their new home met with the desires of missionaries to convert entire neighborhoods. Missionaries and migrants forged fraught relationships with one another and tens of thousands of Black men and women became Catholic in the middle decades of the twentieth century as a result. These Black Catholic converts saved failing parishes by embracing relationships and ritual life that distinguished them from the evangelical churches proliferating around them. They praised the “quiet dignity” of the Latin Mass, while distancing themselves from the gospel choirs, altar calls, and shouts of “amen!” increasingly common in Black evangelical churches. 
 
Their unique rituals and relationships came under intense scrutiny in the late 1960s, when a growing group of Black Catholic activists sparked a revolution in U.S. Catholicism. Inspired by both Black Power and Vatican II, they fought for the self-determination of Black parishes and the right to identify as both Black and Catholic. Faced with strong opposition from fellow Black Catholics, activists became missionaries of a sort as they sought to convert their coreligionists to a distinctively Black Catholicism. This book brings to light the complexities of these debates in what became one of the most significant Black Catholic communities in the country, changing the way we view the history of American Catholicism.
 

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Becoming Black Political Subjects

Movements and Ethno-Racial Rights in Colombia and Brazil

Tianna S. Paschel

After decades of denying racism and underplaying cultural diversity, Latin American states began adopting transformative ethno-racial legislation in the late 1980s. In addition to symbolic recognition of indigenous peoples and black populations, governments in the region created a more pluralistic model of citizenship and made significant reforms in the areas of land, health, education, and development policy. Becoming Black Political Subjects explores this shift from color blindness to ethno-racial legislation in two of the most important cases in the region: Colombia and Brazil.

Drawing on archival and ethnographic research, Tianna Paschel shows how, over a short period, black movements and their claims went from being marginalized to become institutionalized into the law, state bureaucracies, and mainstream politics. The strategic actions of a small group of black activists—working in the context of domestic unrest and the international community's growing interest in ethno-racial issues—successfully brought about change. Paschel also examines the consequences of these reforms, including the institutionalization of certain ideas of blackness, the reconfiguration of black movement organizations, and the unmaking of black rights in the face of reactionary movements.

Becoming Black Political Subjects offers important insights into the changing landscape of race and Latin American politics and provokes readers to adopt a more transnational and flexible understanding of social movements.

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Black Chicago's First Century

1833-1900

Christopher Robert Reed

In Black Chicago’s First Century, Christopher Robert Reed provides the first comprehensive study of an African American population in a nineteenth-century northern city beyond the eastern seaboard. Reed’s study covers the first one hundred years of African American settlement and achievements in the Windy City, encompassing a range of activities and events that span the antebellum, Civil War, Reconstruction, and post-Reconstruction periods. The author takes us from a time when black Chicago provided both workers and soldiers for the Union cause to the ensuing decades that saw the rise and development of a stratified class structure and growth in employment, politics, and culture. Just as the city was transformed in its first century of existence, so were its black inhabitants.
 
Methodologically relying on the federal pension records of Civil War soldiers at the National Archives, as well as previously neglected photographic evidence, manuscripts, contemporary newspapers, and secondary sources, Reed captures the lives of Chicago’s vast army of ordinary black men and women. He places black Chicagoans within the context of northern urban history, providing a better understanding of the similarities and differences among them. We learn of the conditions African Americans faced before and after Emancipation. We learn how the black community changed and developed over time: we learn how these people endured—how they educated their children, how they worked, organized, and played. Black Chicago’s First Century is a balanced and coherent work. Anyone with an interest in urban history or African American studies will find much value in this book.

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Black Firefighters and the FDNY

The Struggle for Jobs, Justice, and Equity in New York City

David Goldberg

For many African Americans, getting a public sector job has historically been one of the few paths to the financial stability of the middle class, and in New York City, few such jobs were as sought-after as positions in the fire department (FDNY). For over a century, generations of Black New Yorkers have fought to gain access to and equal opportunity within the FDNY. Tracing this struggle for jobs and justice from 1898 to the present, David Goldberg details the ways each generation of firefighters confronted overt and institutionalized racism. An important chapter in the histories of both Black social movements and independent workplace organizing, this book demonstrates how Black firefighters in New York helped to create affirmative action from the "bottom up," while simultaneously revealing how white resistance to these efforts shaped white working-class conservatism and myths of American meritocracy.

Full of colorful characters and rousing stories drawn from oral histories, discrimination suits, and the archives of the Vulcan Society (the fraternal society of Black firefighters in New York), this book sheds new light on the impact of Black firefighters in the fight for civil rights.

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Blacks in the Adirondacks

A History

Sally E. Svenson

Blacks in the Adirondacks: A History tells the story of the many African Americans who settled in or passed through this rural, mountainous region of northeastern New York State. In the area for a variety of reasons, some were lifetime residents, while others were there for a few years or months—as summer employees, tuberculosis patients, or in connection with full- or part-time occupations in railroading, the performing arts, and baseball.
From blacks who settled on land gifted to them by Gerrit Smith, a prosperous landowner and fervent abolitionist, to those who worked as waiters in resort hotels, Svenson chronicles their rich and varied experiences, with an emphasis on the 100 years between 1850 and 1950. Many experienced racism and isolation in their separation from larger black populations; some found a sense of community in the scattered black settlements of the region. In this first definitive history, Svenson gives voice to the many blacks who spent time in the Adirondacks and sheds light on their challenges and successes in this remote region.

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Bullets and Fire

Lynching and Authority in Arkansas, 1840-1950

Bullets and Fire is the first collection on lynching in Arkansas, exploring all corners of the state from the time of slavery up to the mid-twentieth century and covering stories of the perpetrators, victims, and those who fought against vigilante violence.

Among the topics discussed are the lynching of slaves, the Arkansas Council of the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching, the 1927 lynching of John Carter in Little Rock, and the state’s long opposition to a federal anti-lynching law.

Throughout, the work reveals how the phenomenon of lynching—as the means by which a system of white supremacy reified itself, with its perpetrators rarely punished and its defenders never condemned—served to construct authority in Arkansas. Bullets and Fire will add depth to the growing body of literature on American lynching and integrate a deeper understanding of this violence into Arkansas history.

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The Legend of the Black Mecca

Politics and Class in the Making of Modern Atlanta

Maurice J. Hobson

For more than a century, the city of Atlanta has been associated with black achievement in education, business, politics, media, and music, earning it the nickname "the black Mecca." Atlanta's long tradition of black education dates back to Reconstruction, and produced an elite that flourished in spite of Jim Crow, rose to leadership during the civil rights movement, and then took power in the 1970s by building a coalition between white progressives, business interests, and black Atlantans. But as Maurice J. Hobson demonstrates, Atlanta's political leadership--from the election of Maynard Jackson, Atlanta's first black mayor, through the city's hosting of the 1996 Olympic Games--has consistently mishandled the black poor. Drawn from vivid primary sources and unnerving oral histories of working-class city-dwellers and hip-hop artists from Atlanta's underbelly, Hobson argues that Atlanta's political leadership has governed by bargaining with white business interests to the detriment of ordinary black Atlantans.
In telling this history through the prism of the black New South and Atlanta politics, policy, and pop culture, Hobson portrays a striking schism between the black political elite and poor city-dwellers, complicating the long-held view of Atlanta as a mecca for black people.

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Making Black History

The Color Line, Culture, and Race in the Age of Jim Crow

Jeffrey Aaron Snyder

In the Jim Crow era, along with black churches, schools, and newspapers, African Americans also had their own history. Making Black History focuses on the engine behind the early black history movement, Carter G. Woodson and his Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). Author Jeffrey Aaron Snyder shows how the study and celebration of black history became an increasingly important part of African American life over the course of the early to mid-twentieth century. It was the glue that held African Americans together as “a people,” a weapon to fight racism, and a roadmap to a brighter future.

Making Black History takes an expansive view of the historical enterprise, covering not just the production of black history but also its circulation, reception, and performance. Woodson, the only professional historian whose parents had been born into slavery, attracted a strong network of devoted members to the ASNLH, including professional and lay historians, teachers, students, “race” leaders, journalists, and artists. They all grappled with a set of interrelated questions: Who and what is “Negro”? What is the relationship of black history to American history? And what are the purposes of history? Tracking the different answers to these questions, Snyder recovers a rich public discourse about black history that took shape in journals, monographs, and textbooks and sprang to life in the pages of the black press, the classrooms of black schools, and annual celebrations of Negro History Week. By lining up the Negro history movement’s trajectory with the wider arc of African American history, Snyder changes our understanding of such signal aspects of twentieth-century black life as segregated schools, the Harlem Renaissance, and the emerging modern civil rights movement.

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Porous Borders

Multiracial Migrations and the Law in the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands

Julian Lim

With the railroad's arrival in the late nineteenth century, immigrants of all colors rushed to the U.S.-Mexico borderlands, transforming the region into a booming international hub of economic and human activity. Following the stream of Mexican, Chinese, and African American migration, Julian Lim presents a fresh study of the multiracial intersections of the borderlands, where diverse peoples crossed multiple boundaries in search of new economic opportunities and social relations. However, as these migrants came together in ways that blurred and confounded elite expectations of racial order, both the United States and Mexico resorted to increasingly exclusionary immigration policies in order to make the multiracial populations of the borderlands less visible within the body politic, and to remove them from the boundaries of national identity altogether.

Using a variety of English- and Spanish-language primary sources from both sides of the border, Lim reveals how a borderlands region that has traditionally been defined by Mexican-Anglo relations was in fact shaped by a diverse population that came together dynamically through work and play, in the streets and in homes, through war and marriage, and in the very act of crossing the border.

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Religion of the Field Negro

On Black Secularism and Black Theology

Vincent W. Lloyd

Black theology has lost its direction. To reclaim its original power and to advance racial justice struggles today black theology must fully embrace blackness and theology. But multiculturalism and religious pluralism have boxed in black theology, forcing it to speak in terms dictated by a power structure founded on white supremacy. In Religion of the Field Negro, Vincent W. Lloyd advances and develops black theology immodestly, privileging the perspective of African Americans and employing a distinctively theological analysis. As Lloyd argues, secularism is entangled with the disciplining impulses of modernity, with neoliberal economics, and with Western imperialism – but it also contaminates and castrates black theology. Inspired by critics of secularism in other fields, Religion of the Field Negro probes the subtle ways in which religion is excluded and managed in black culture. Using Barack Obama, Huey Newton, and Steve Biko as case studies, it shows how the criticism of secularism is the prerequisite of all criticism, and it shows how criticism and grassroots organizing must go hand in hand. But scholars of secularism too often ignore race, and scholars of race too often ignore secularism. Scholars of black theology too often ignore the theoretical insights of secular black studies scholars, and race theorists too often ignore the critical insights of religious thinkers. Religion of the Field Negro brings together vibrant scholarly conversations that have remained at a distance from each other until now. Weaving theological sources, critical theory, and cultural analysis, this book offers new answers to pressing questions about race and justice, love and hope, theorizing and organizing, and the role of whites in black struggle. The insights of James Cone are developed together with those of James Baldwin, Sylvia Wynter, and Achille Mbembe, all in the service of developing a political-theological vision that motivates us to challenge the racist paradigms of white supremacy.

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Remaking Black Power

How Black Women Transformed an Era

Ashley D. Farmer

In this comprehensive history, Ashley D. Farmer examines black women's political, social, and cultural engagement with Black Power ideals and organizations. Complicating the assumption that sexism relegated black women to the margins of the movement, Farmer demonstrates how female activists fought for more inclusive understandings of Black Power and social justice by developing new ideas about black womanhood. This compelling book shows how the new tropes of womanhood that they created--the "Militant Black Domestic," the "Revolutionary Black Woman," and the "Third World Woman," for instance--spurred debate among activists over the importance of women and gender to Black Power organizing, causing many of the era's organizations and leaders to critique patriarchy and support gender equality.

Making use of a vast and untapped array of black women's artwork, political cartoons, manifestos, and political essays that they produced as members of groups such as the Black Panther Party and the Congress of African People, Farmer reveals how black women activists reimagined black womanhood, challenged sexism, and redefined the meaning of race, gender, and identity in American life.

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Shadowed Dreams

Women's Poetry of the Harlem Renaissance

Nellie McKay

This revised and expanded version of the collection contains twice the number of poems found in the original, many of them never before reprinted, and adds eighteen new female voices from the Harlem Renaissance, once again striking new ground in African American literary history. Also new to this edition are nine period illustrations and updated biographical introductions for each poet.

Shadowed Dreams features new poems by Gwendolyn B. Bennett, Anita Scott Coleman, Mae V. Cowdery, Blanche Taylor Dickinson, Alice Dunbar-Nelson, Jessie Redmon Fauset, Angelina Weld Grimké, Gladys May Casely Hayford (a k a Aquah Laluah), Virginia Houston, Georgia Douglas Johnson, Helene Johnson, Effie Lee Newsome, Esther Popel, and Anne Spencer, as well as writings from rediscovered poets Carrie Williams Clifford, Edythe Mae Gordon, Alvira Hazzard, Gertrude Parthenia McBrown, Beatrice M. Murphy, Lucia Mae Pitts, Grace Vera Postles, Ida Rowland, and Lucy Mae Turner, among others.

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Understanding John Edgar Wideman

D. Quentin Miller

Among the many gifted African American authors who emerged in the 1970s and 80s, John Edgar Wideman is one of the most challenging and innovative. His analytical mind can turn almost any topic into an intellectual adventure, whether it is playground basketball, the blues, the prison experience, father-son relationships, or the stories he lived or heard growing up in the impoverished section of Pittsburgh known as Homewood. In Understanding John Edgar Wideman, D. Quentin Miller offers a comprehensive overview of Wideman’s writings, which range from the critically acclaimed books of the Homewood Trilogy to lesser known writings such as the early novels A Glance Away and The Lynchers. Notably Miller includes the first scholarly analysis of Writing to Save a Life, Wideman’s recently published meditation on the military trial and execution of the father of civil rights martyr Emmett Till. In his fiction, nonfiction, and works that artfully combine both forms, Wideman has employed a multilayered and often difficult writing style in order to explore a wide range of topics. Miller tackles such topics as African American folk history, the intersection of personal and public history, the confluence of oral and written traditions, and the quest for meaning in nihilistic urban settings where black families struggle against crime, poverty, and despair. Miller also shows how Wideman’s singular personal history is interwoven into his writings. His impressive accomplishments, including an Ivy League education and numerous literary honors, have come alongside family tragedies. By the time his sixth novel was published, both his brother and son were serving life sentences for murder, a source of anguish that he wrestled with in Brothers and Keepers and Fatheralong. Wideman writes with such authority on so many subjects that readers frequently have no idea what to expect with a new publication. Understanding John Edgar Wideman is thus a necessary guide to a prolific, varied, and essential oeuvre.

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The War Before

The True Life Story of Becoming a Black Panther, Keeping the Faith in Prison, and Fighting for Those Left Behind

Written by Safiya Bukhari; Edited by Laura Whitehorn; Foreword by Angela Y. Davis; Afterword by Mumia Abu-Jamal

The War Before traces Bukhari’s lifelong commitment as an advocate for the rights of the oppressed. Following her journey from middle-class student to Black Panther to political prisoner, these writings provide an intimate view of a woman wrestling with the issues of her time—the troubled legacy of the Panthers, misogyny in the movement, her decision to convert to Islam, the incarceration of out spoken radicals, and the families left behind.

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The Black Chicago Renaissance

Edited by Darlene Clark Hine and John McCluskey Jr.

Beginning in the 1930s, Black Chicago experienced a cultural renaissance that lasted into the 1950s and rivaled the cultural outpouring in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s. The contributors to this volume analyze this prolific period of African American creativity in music, performance art, social science scholarship, and visual and literary artistic expression.
 
Unlike Harlem, Chicago was an urban industrial center that gave a unique working class and internationalist perspective to the cultural work being done in Chicago. This collection's various essays discuss the forces that distinguished the Black Chicago Renaissance from the Harlem Renaissance and placed the development of black culture in a national and international context. Among the topics discussed in this volume are Chicago writers Gwendolyn Brooks and Richard Wright, The Chicago Defender and Tivoli Theater, African American music and visual arts, and the American Negro Exposition of 1940.
 
Contributors are Hilary Mac Austin, David T. Bailey, Murry N. DePillars, Samuel A. Floyd Jr., Erik S. Gellman, Jeffrey Helgeson, Darlene Clark Hine, John McCluskey Jr., Christopher Robert Reed, Elizabeth Schlabach, and Clovis E. Semmes.

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Claude McKay, Rebel Sojourner in the Harlem Renaissance

A Biography

Wayne F. Cooper

“Cooper paints a meticulous and absorbing portrait of McKay’s restless artistic, intellectual, and political odyssey... The definitive biography on McKay.”—Choice

Although recognized today as one of the genuine pioneers of black literature in this century—the author of “If We Must Die,” Home to Harlem, Banana Bottom, and A Long Way from Home, among other works—Claude McKay (1890–1948) died penniless and almost forgotten in a Chicago hospital. In this masterly study, Wayne Cooper presents a fascinating, detailed account of McKay’s complex, chaotic, and frequently contradictory life.

In his poetry and fiction, as well as in his political and social commentaries, McKay searched for a solid foundation for a valid black identity among the working-class cultures of the West Indies and the United States. He was an undeniably important predecessor to such younger writers of the Harlem Renaissance as Langston Hughes and Countee Cullen, and also to influential West Indian and African writers such as C. L. R. James and Aimé Césaire. Knowledge of his life adds important dimensions to our understanding of American radicalism, the expatriates of the 1920s, and American literature.

“Mr. Cooper’s most original contribution is his careful and perceptive analysis of McKay’s nonfiction writing, especially his social and political commentary, which often contained ‘prophetic statements‘ on a range of important social, political, and historical issues.”—New York Times Book Review

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Comrades

A Local History of the Black Panther Party

Edited by Judson L. Jeffries

The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was founded in Oakland, California, in 1966 by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale. It was perhaps the most visible of the Black Power groups in the late 60s and early 70s, not least because of its confrontational politics, its rejection of nonviolence, and its headline-catching, gun-toting militancy. Important on the national scene and highly visible on college campuses, the Panthers also worked at building grassroots support for local black political and economic power. Although there have been many books about the Black Panthers, none has looked at the organization and its work at the local level. This book examines the work and actions of seven local initiatives in Baltimore, Winston-Salem, Cleveland, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles. These local organizations are revealed as committed to programs of community activism that focused on problems of social, political, and economic justice.

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Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless

The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves Living in Indiana

Ronald L. Baker

Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless
The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves Living in Indiana
Ronald L. Baker

Lives of former slaves in their own words, published for the first time.

Based on a collection of interviews conducted in the late 1930s, Homeless, Friendless, and Penniless is an invaluable record of the lives and thoughts of former slaves who moved to Indiana after the Civil War and made significant contributions to the evolving patchwork of Hoosier culture.

The Indiana slave narratives provide a glimpse of slavery as remembered by those who experienced it, preserving insiders’ views of a tragic chapter in American history. Though they were living in Indiana at the time of the interviews, these African Americans been enslaved in 11 different states from the Carolinas to Louisiana. The interviews deal with life and work on the plantation; the treatment of slaves; escaping from slavery; education, religion, and slave folklore; and recollections of the Civil War. Just as important, the interviews reveal how former slaves fared in Indiana after the Civil War and during the Depression. Some became ministers, a few became educators, and one became a physician; but many lived in poverty and survived on Christian faith and small government pensions.

Ronald L. Baker, Chairperson and Professor of English at Indiana State University, is author of many books, including Hoosier Folk Legends and From Needmore to Prosperity: Hoosier Place Names in Folklore and History (both from Indiana University Press. He is co-author of Indiana Place Names with Marvin Carmony and editor of The Folklore Historian, the journal of the Folklore and History Section of the American Folklore Society.

Contents
Part One: A Folk History of Slavery
Background of the WPA Interviews
Presentation of Material
Living and Working on the Plantation
The Treatment of Slaves
Escaping from Slavery
Education
Religion
Folklore
Recollections of the Civil War
Living and Working after the Civil War
Value of the WPA Interviews
Acknowledgments
Part Two: The WPA Interviews with Former Slaves [134 entries]
Appendices, including Thematic Index

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My Life and An Era

The Autobiography of Buck Colbert Franklin

John Hope Franklin

“My father’s life represented many layers of the human experience—freedman and Native American, farmer and rancher, rural educator and urban professional.”—John Hope Franklin

Buck Colbert Franklin (1879–1960) led an extraordinary life; from his youth in what was then the Indian Territory to his practice of law in twentieth-century Tulsa, he was an observant witness to the changes in politics, law, daily existence, and race relations that transformed the wide-open Southwest. Fascinating in its depiction of an intelligent young man's coming of age in the days of the Land Rush and the closing of the frontier, My Life and an Era is equally important for its reporting of the triracial culture of early Oklahoma.

Recalling his boyhood spent in the Chickasaw Nation, Franklin suggests that blacks fared better in Oklahoma in the days of the Indians than they did later with the white population. In addition to his insights about the social milieu, he offers youthful reminiscences of mustangs and mountain lions, of farming and ranch life, that might appear in a Western novel.

After returning from college in Nashville and Atlanta, Franklin married a college classmate, studied law by mail, passed the bar, and struggled to build a practice in Springer and Ardmore in the first years of Oklahoma statehood. Eventually a successful attorney in Tulsa, he was an eyewitness to a number of important events in the Southwest, including the Tulsa race riot of 1921, which left more than 100 dead. His account clearly shows the growing racial tensions as more and more people moved into the state in the period leading up to World War II.

Rounded out by an older man’s reflections on race, religion, culture, and law, My Life and an Era presents a true, firsthand account of a unique yet defining place and time in the nation's history, as told by an eloquent and impassioned writer.

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Racial Inequality

A Political-Economic Analysis

M. Reich

In an investigation of the effects of racism on the American economy, Michael Reich evaluates the leading economic theories of racial inequality and presents the new theory that discrimination against blacks increases inequality of income among whites.

Originally published in .

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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The Sovereignty of Quiet

Beyond Resistance in Black Culture

Kevin Quashie

African American culture is often considered expressive, dramatic, and even defiant. In The Sovereignty of Quiet, Kevin Quashie explores quiet as a different kind of expressiveness, one which characterizes a person’s desires, ambitions, hungers, vulnerabilities, and fears. Quiet is a metaphor for the inner life, and as such, enables a more nuanced understanding of black culture.

 

The book revisits such iconic moments as Tommie Smith and John Carlos’s protest at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics and Elizabeth Alexander’s reading at the 2009 inauguration of Barack Obama. Quashie also examines such landmark texts as Gwendolyn Brooks’s Maud Martha, James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time, and Toni Morrison’s Sula to move beyond the emphasis on resistance, and to suggest that concepts like surrender, dreaming, and waiting can remind us of the wealth of black humanity.

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Black Camera

Vol. 1 (2009) through current issue

Black Camera is devoted to the study and documentation of the black cinematic experience and is the only scholarly film journal of its kind in the United States. It regularly features essays and interviews that engage film in social as well as political distribution, and production of film in local, regional, national, and transnational settings and environments.

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Palimpsest: A Journal on Women, Gender, and the Black International

Vol. 1 (2012) through current issue

Palimpsest: A Journal on Women, Gender, and the Black International is a peer-reviewed journal that publishes cutting-edge interdisciplinary scholarship and creative work by and about women of the African Diaspora and their communities in the Atlantic and Indian Ocean worlds.

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Surrogate Suburbs

Black Upward Mobility and Neighborhood Change in Cleveland, 1900–1980

Todd M. Michney

The story of white flight and the neglect of black urban neighborhoods has been well told by urban historians in recent decades. Yet much of this scholarship has downplayed black agency and tended to portray African Americans as victims of structural forces beyond their control. In this history of Cleveland's black middle class, Todd Michney uncovers the creative ways that members of this nascent community established footholds in areas outside the overcrowded, inner-city neighborhoods to which most African Americans were consigned. In asserting their right to these outer-city spaces, African Americans appealed to city officials, allied with politically progressive whites (notably Jewish activists), and relied upon both black and white developers and real estate agents to expand these "surrogate suburbs" and maintain their livability until the bona fide suburbs became more accessible.

By tracking the trajectories of those who, in spite of racism, were able to succeed, Michney offers a valuable counterweight to histories that have focused on racial conflict and black poverty and tells the neglected story of the black middle class in America's cities prior to the 1960s.

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