The Strike That Changed New York: Blacks, Whites, and the Ocean Hill-Brownsville Crisis

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Yale University Press, Dec 1, 2004 - Political Science - 273 pages
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On May 9, 1968, junior high school teacher Fred Nauman received a letter that would change the history of New York City. It informed him that he had been fired from his job. Eighteen other educators in the Ocean Hill-Brownsville area of Brooklyn received similar letters that day. The dismissed educators were white. The local school board that fired them was predominantly African-American. The crisis that the firings provoked became the most racially divisive moment in the city in more than a century, sparking three teachers' strikes and increasingly angry confrontations between black and white New Yorkers at bargaining tables, on picket lines, and in the streets.

This superb book revisits the Ocean Hill-Brownsville crisis--a watershed in modern New York City race relations. Jerald E. Podair connects the conflict with the sociocultural history of the city and explores its legacy. The book is a powerful, sobering tale of racial misunderstanding and fear, a New York story with national implications.
 

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Contents

May 9 1968
1
Two New Yorks New York City 19451965
9
The Rise of Community
21
Black Values White Values Race and Culture in New York City During the 1960s
48
The Ocean HillBrownsville Community Control Experiment
71
The Strikes
103
Like Strangers The Third Strike and Beyond
123
Culture War
153
After the Crisis Race and Memory
183
Ocean HillBrownsville New York America
206
Notes
215
Sources
249
Index
261
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Jerald E. Podair is assistant professor of history at Lawrence University. He received the Allan Nevins Prize from the Society of American Historians in 1998.

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