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On November 4, 2008, Americans went to the polls and elected the first black president in the history of the United States. Barack Obama was clearly a gifted politician with impressive achievements and a compelling life story. Still, his historic election wouldn't have been possible if earlier generations of African Americans hadn't paved the way. This book tells the stories of pioneering African-American lawyers and politicians. It details their efforts to guarantee black people the same rights enjoyed by other Americans, including the right to vote. In courtrooms, statehouses, and the halls of Congress, the people profiled in this book have helped make the United States what the framers of the Constitution hoped: "a more perfect Union."
African American political scientists speak out about their discipline, academic issues and racism in the profession.
The political value of African American literature has long been a topic of great debate among American writers, both black and white, from Thomas Jefferson to Barack Obama. In his compelling new book, Representing the Race, Gene Andrew Jarrett traces the genealogy of this topic in order to develop an innovative political history of African American literature. Jarrett examines texts of every sortOCopamphlets, autobiographies, cultural criticism, poems, short stories, and novelsOCoto parse the myths of authenticity, popular culture, nationalism, and militancy that have come to define African American political activism in recent decades. He argues that unless we show the diverse and complex ways that African American literature has transformed society, political myths will continue to limit our understanding of this intellectual tradition. Cultural forums ranging from the printing press, schools, and conventions, to parlors, railroad cars, and courtrooms provide the backdrop to this African American literary history, while the foreground is replete with compelling stories, from the debate over racial genius in early American history and the intellectual culture of racial politics after slavery, to the tension between copyright law and free speech in contemporary African American culture, to the political audacity of Barack ObamaOCOs creative writing. Erudite yet accessible, Representing the Race is a bold explanation of whatOCOs at stake in continuing to politicize African American literature in the new millennium."
The reflections on their lives in law of pioneer black women lawyers
Die Wahl von Barack Obama im November 2008 markierte einen historischen Wendepunkt in den USA: Der erste schwarze Präsident schien für eine postrassistische Gesellschaft und den Triumph der Bürgerrechtsbewegung zu stehen. Doch die Realität in den USA ist eine andere. Obwohl die Rassentrennung, die in den sogenannten Jim-Crow-Gesetzen festgeschrieben war, im Zuge der Bürgerrechtsbewegung abgeschafft wurde, sitzt heute ein unfassbar hoher Anteil der schwarzen Bevölkerung im Gefängnis oder ist lebenslang als kriminell gebrandmarkt. Ein Status, der die Leute zu Bürgern zweiter Klasse macht, indem er sie ihrer grundsätzlichsten Rechte beraubt – ganz ähnlich den explizit rassistischen Diskriminierungen der Jim-Crow-Ära. In ihrem Buch, das in Amerika eine breite Debatte ausgelöst hat, argumentiert Michelle Alexander, dass die USA ihr rassistisches System nach der Bürgerrechtsbewegung nicht abgeschafft, sondern lediglich umgestaltet haben. Da unter dem perfiden Deckmantel des »War on Drugs« überproportional junge männliche Schwarze und ihre Communities kriminalisiert werden, funktioniert das drakonische Strafjustizsystem der USA heute wie das System rassistischer Kontrolle von gestern: ein neues Jim Crow.
In the 1930s, fewer than one in one hundred U.S. labor union members were African American. By 1980, the figure was more than one in five. Black and Blue explores the politics and history that led to this dramatic integration of organized labor. In the process, the book tells a broader story about how the Democratic Party unintentionally sowed the seeds of labor's decline. The labor and civil rights movements are the cornerstones of the Democratic Party, but for much of the twentieth century these movements worked independently of one another. Paul Frymer argues that as Democrats passed separate legislation to promote labor rights and racial equality they split the issues of class and race into two sets of institutions, neither of which had enough authority to integrate the labor movement. From this division, the courts became the leading enforcers of workplace civil rights, threatening unions with bankruptcy if they resisted integration. The courts' previously unappreciated power, however, was also a problem: in diversifying unions, judges and lawyers enfeebled them financially, thus democratizing through destruction. Sharply delineating the double-edged sword of state and legal power, Black and Blue chronicles an achievement that was as problematic as it was remarkable, and that demonstrates the deficiencies of race- and class-based understandings of labor, equality, and power in America.
"To pursue the concept of racial entitlement-even for the most admirable and benign of purposes-is to reinforce and preserve for future mischief the way of thinking that produced race slavery, race privilege and race hatred. In the eyes of government, we are just one race here. It is American." Justice Scalia "It never ceases to amaze me that the courts are so willing to assume that anything that is predominantly black must be inferior...Because of their distinctive histories and traditions, black schools can function as the center and symbol of black communities, and provide examples of independent black leadership, success, and achievement." Justice Thomas It is widely recognized that the idea of rights is central to America's national identity and its sense of itself.1 So powerful is our attachment to rights that some scholars see the American story as powerfully intertwined with what they label a "myth of rights."2 In this myth of rights perhaps nothing plays as important a role as the history of the mid-twentieth century struggle for civil rights for African-Americans. Brown v. Board of Education is, of course, the key moment in that struggle and it has become one of America's "sacred texts," a decision to which almost everyone pays homage even when they act in ways incompatible with its central premises.3 It is to the spirit of Brown that groups seeking recognition continuously appeal, a spirit that today plays a key role in the debate over gay marriage.4 Civil Rights in the American Story brings together the work of five distinguished scholars to critically assess the place of civil rights in the American story. This work includes examples of both the "old" and the "new" civil rights history. It uses the sources and analytics of both legal and social history"--

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