The Unsteady March: The Rise and Decline of Racial Equality in America

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University of Chicago Press, 2002 - Political Science - 417 pages
American life is filled with talk of progress and equality, especially when the issue is that of race. But has the history of race in America really been the continuous march toward equality we'd like to imagine it has? This sweeping history of race in America argues quite the opposite: that progress toward equality has been sporadic, isolated, and surrounded by long periods of stagnation and retrenchment.

"[An] unflinching portrait of the leviathan of American race relations. . . . This important book should be read by all who aspire to create a more perfect union."—Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Could it be that our unswerving belief in the power of our core values to produce racial equality is nothing but a comforting myth? That is the main argument put forth by Philip Klinkner and Rogers Smith . . . The Unsteady March is disturbing because it calls into question our cherished national belief and does so convincingly. . . . [It] is beautifully written, and the social history it provides is illuminating and penetrating."—Aldon Morris, American Journal of Sociology

Winner of the Horace Mann Bond Award of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for Afro-American Research at Harvard University.
 

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THE UNSTEADY MARCH: The Rise and Decline of Racial Equality in America

User Review  - Kirkus

Both experts in government and history, Klinkner (Hamilton Coll.; The Losing Parties, not reviewed) and Smith (Yale; Civic Ideals, not reviewed ) mean to "sound an alarm" about the still poor state of ... Read full review

The unsteady march: the rise and decline of racial equality in America

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Political scientists Klinkner (Hamilton Coll.) and Smith (Yale) argue that American racial progress has occurred only in ten- to 15-year bursts and then only in three specific sets of circumstances ... Read full review

Contents

Bolted with the Lock of a Hundred Keys The Era of Slavery 16191860
10
Thenceforward and Forever Free The Civil War 18601865
47
The Negro Has Got as Much as He Ought to Have Reconstruction and the Second Retreat 18651908
72
The Color Line Jim Crow America 19081938
106
Deutschland and Dixieland Antifascism and the Emergence of Civil Rights 19381941
136
Double V Victory Abroad Victory at Home World War II
161
Hearts and Minds The Cold War and Civil Rights 19461954
202
There Comes a Time The Civil Rights Revolution 19541968
242
Benign Neglect? PostCivil Rights America 19681998
288
Shall We Overcome?
317
Notes
353
Index
407
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About the author (2002)

Philip A. Klinkner is an associate professor of government at Hamilton College.

Rogers M. Smith is the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania.

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