Download e-book for iPad: Abiding courage: African American migrant women and the East by Gretchen Lemke-Santangelo

By Gretchen Lemke-Santangelo

ISBN-10: 0807822566

ISBN-13: 9780807822562

Among 1940 and 1945, millions of African americans migrated from the South to the East Bay zone of northern California looking for the social and monetary mobility that was once linked to the region's increasing protection and its acceptance for larger racial tolerance. Drawing on fifty oral interviews with migrants in addition to on archival and different written documents, Abiding braveness examines the stories of the African American ladies who migrated west and equipped groups there.Gretchen Lemke-Santangelo vividly exhibits how ladies made the transition from southern family and box paintings to jobs in an business, wartime economic climate. whilst, they have been suffering to maintain their households jointly, constructing new families, and developing community-sustaining networks and associations. whereas white ladies shouldered the double burden of salary hard work and home tasks, black ladies confronted even better demanding situations: discovering homes and colleges, finding church buildings and clinical prone, and contending with racism. by way of targeting girls, Lemke-Santangelo presents new views on the place and the way social switch happens and the way group is validated and maintained.

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5 Indirectly, this work contributes to an increasingly lively debate on the origins of postwar urban poverty. Nicholas Lemann, whose work The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How It Changed America revived the "culture of poverty" thesis, argues that the contemporary black "underclass" shares an "ethic of dependency" fostered by the southern sharecropping system and transplanted to urban centers by migrants from the South. The women whose lives are told in these pages tell a different story.

Ultimately, the interviews were fluid exchanges where power and control shifted between informant and respondent. To deny migrant women's power in the research processpower stemming from their status as elders and as owners of valuable informationis to adopt a patronizing stance, one that uncritically accepts and perhaps reinforces assumed hierarchies. 9 In the end, I presented the women's stories much as they were recorded. Not surprisingly, the women represented themselves and their communities as self-determining, existing in opposition to and in spite of white control, but also as independent, true, and whole.

To Pauli Murray and most other black citizens, this "intricate racial code" made for a "straightjacket existence, which became more oppressive as I grew older. Each of us had to deal with it as best we could. "23 Efforts to remove the straightjacketeven efforts that were sanctioned by lawwere severely hampered by white-on-black violence and legislation. By 1910 all southern states had adopted laws that disfranchised the majority of black citizens. "24 Although the white primary, poll tax, and literacy tests would endure into the 1940s and beyond, black southerners protested disfranchisement from the beginning.

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Abiding courage: African American migrant women and the East Bay community by Gretchen Lemke-Santangelo


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