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Presents an epic history that covers the period from the end of World War I through the 1970s, chronicling the decades-long migration of African Americans from the South to the North and West through the stories of three individuals and their families.
An epic history covering the period from the end of World War I through the 1970s chronicles the decades-long migration of African Americans from the South to the North and West through the stories of three individuals and their families.
One of The New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Books of the Year In this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life. From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves. With stunning historical detail, Wilkerson tells this story through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet blue-collar success and, in old age, voted for Barack Obama when he ran for an Illinois Senate seat; sharp and quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God; and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as part of a glitteringly successful medical career, which allowed him to purchase a grand home where he often threw exuberant parties. Wilkerson brilliantly captures their first treacherous and exhausting cross-country trips by car and train and their new lives in colonies that grew into ghettos, as well as how they changed these cities with southern food, faith, and culture and improved them with discipline, drive, and hard work. Both a riveting microcosm and a major assessment, The Warmth of Other Suns is a bold, remarkable, and riveting work, a superb account of an “unrecognized immigration” within our own land. Through the breadth of its narrative, the beauty of the writing, the depth of its research, and the fullness of the people and lives portrayed herein, this book is destined to become a classic. From the Hardcover edition.
PLEASE NOTE: This is a summary, analysis and review of the book and not the original book. Isabel Wilkerson provides a stunning look into The Great Migration of black southerners in 20th century America in, The Warmth of Other Suns. Experience Wilkerson's in-depth view into the personal struggles of being black in America in the century after slavery had ended, and beyond. This FastReads Summary & Analysis offers supplementary material to The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration to help you distill the key takeaways, review the book's content, and further understand the writing style and overall themes from an editorial perspective. Whether you'd like to deepen your understanding, refresh your memory, or simply decide whether or not this book is for you, FastReads Summary & Analysis is here to help. Absorb everything you need to know in under 20 minutes! What does this FastReads Summary Include? Executive summary of the original book Chapter-by-chapter synopses Key Takeaways from each chapter Editorial Review Original Book Summary Overview The Warmth of Other Suns is a re-telling of The Great Migration, in which six million black southerners migrated to the northern and western regions of the United States in the eight decades between World War I and 1970. This massive true-life tale is anchored in the lives of three real-life figures, Ida Mae Brandon Gladney, George Swanson Starling, and Robert Pershing Foster, who originated from different southern towns and migrated to different urban cities of the North at different times. They left for a personal set of diverse reasons and lived unique lives that diverged drastically from one another. Although they never knew each other and were unaware of their individual roles in one of the largest migrations movements in modern human history, these three characters were connected by a shared determination to seek freedom in a shared vision of the North. BEFORE YOU BUY: The purpose of this FastReads Summary is to help you decide if it's worth the time, money and effort reading the original book (if you haven't already). FastReads has pulled out the essence-but only to help you ascertain the value of the book for yourself. This analysis is meant as a supplement to, and not a replacement for, The Warmth of Other Suns.
A New York Times bestseller, the groundbreaking authoritative history of the migration of African-Americans from the rural South to the urban North. A definitive book on American history, The Promised Land is also essential reading for educators and policymakers at both national and local levels. From the Trade Paperback edition.
What were the causes that motivated legions of black southerners to immigrate to the North? What was the impact upon the land they left and upon the communities they chose for their new homes? Perhaps no pattern of migration has changed America's socioeconomic structure more than this mass exodus of African Americans in the first half of the twentieth century. Because of this exodus, the South lost not only a huge percentage of its inhabitants to northern cities like Chicago, New York, Detroit, and Philadelphia but also its supply of cheap labor. Fleeing from racial injustice and poverty, southern blacks took their culture north with them and transformed northern urban centers with their churches, social institutions, and ways of life. In Black Exodus eight noted scholars consider the causes that stimulated the migration and examine the far-reaching results.
From 1940 to 1970, nearly four million black migrants left the American rural South to settle in the industrial cities of the North and West. Competition in the Promised Land provides a comprehensive account of the long-lasting effects of the influx of black workers on labor markets and urban space in receiving areas. Traditionally, the Great Black Migration has been lauded as a path to general black economic progress. Leah Boustan challenges this view, arguing instead that the migration produced winners and losers within the black community. Boustan shows that migrants themselves gained tremendously, more than doubling their earnings by moving North. But these new arrivals competed with existing black workers, limiting black–white wage convergence in Northern labor markets and slowing black economic growth. Furthermore, many white households responded to the black migration by relocating to the suburbs. White flight was motivated not only by neighborhood racial change but also by the desire on the part of white residents to avoid participating in the local public services and fiscal obligations of increasingly diverse cities. Employing historical census data and state-of-the-art econometric methods, Competition in the Promised Land revises our understanding of the Great Black Migration and its role in the transformation of American society.

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