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Race and Renaissance

Race and Renaissance

Author: Joe W. Trotter, Jared N. Day
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
ISBN: 0822977559
Pages: 304
Year: 2010-06-27
African Americans from Pittsburgh have a long and distinctive history of contributions to the cultural, political, and social evolution of the United States. From jazz legend Earl Fatha Hines to playwright August Wilson, from labor protests in the 1950s to the Black Power movement of the late 1960s, Pittsburgh has been a force for change in American race and class relations. Race and Renaissance presents the first history of African American life in Pittsburgh after World War II. It examines the origins and significance of the second Great Migration, the persistence of Jim Crow into the postwar years, the second ghetto, the contemporary urban crisis, the civil rights and Black Power movements, and the Million Man and Million Woman marches, among other topics. In recreating this period, Trotter and Day draw not only from newspaper articles and other primary and secondary sources, but also from oral histories. These include interviews with African Americans who lived in Pittsburgh during the postwar era, uncovering firsthand accounts of what life was truly like during this transformative epoch in urban history. In these ways, Race and Renaissance illuminateshow African Americans arrived at their present moment in history. It also links movements for change to larger global issues: civil rights with the Vietnam War; affirmative action with the movement against South African apartheid. As such, the study draws on both sociology and urban studies to deepen our understanding of the lives of urban blacks.
African Americans in Pittsburgh

African Americans in Pittsburgh

Author: John M. Brewer Jr.
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
ISBN: 1439617848
Pages: 128
Year: 2012-09-18
African Americans in Pittsburgh chronicles the distinct trends in this African American community. There was never one centralized neighborhood where a majority of the black population lived, and city schools were integrated until after desegregation laws were passed. Photographs captured by famed Pittsburgh photographer Charles "Teenie" Harris show the candid experiences of residents, including the achievements and celebrations of people struggling to put scraps of food on the table.
Smoketown

Smoketown

Author: Mark Whitaker
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501122398
Pages: 432
Year: 2018-01-30
“Smoketown brilliantly offers us a chance to see this other black renaissance and spend time with the many luminaries who sparked it…It’s thanks to such a gifted storyteller as Whitaker that this forgotten chapter of American history can finally be told in all its vibrancy and glory.”—The New York Times Book Review The other great Renaissance of black culture, influence, and glamour burst forth joyfully in what may seem an unlikely place—Pittsburgh, PA—from the 1920s through the 1950s. Today black Pittsburgh is known as the setting for August Wilson’s famed plays about noble but doomed working-class strivers. But this community once had an impact on American history that rivaled the far larger black worlds of Harlem and Chicago. It published the most widely read black newspaper in the country, urging black voters to switch from the Republican to the Democratic Party and then rallying black support for World War II. It fielded two of the greatest baseball teams of the Negro Leagues and introduced Jackie Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers. Pittsburgh was the childhood home of jazz pioneers Billy Strayhorn, Billy Eckstine, Earl Hines, Mary Lou Williams, and Erroll Garner; Hall of Fame slugger Josh Gibson—and August Wilson himself. Some of the most glittering figures of the era were changed forever by the time they spent in the city, from Joe Louis and Satchel Paige to Duke Ellington and Lena Horne. Mark Whitaker’s Smoketown is a captivating portrait of this unsung community and a vital addition to the story of black America. It depicts how ambitious Southern migrants were drawn to a steel-making city on a strategic river junction; how they were shaped by its schools and a spirit of commerce with roots in the Gilded Age; and how their world was eventually destroyed by industrial decline and urban renewal. Whitaker takes readers on a rousing, revelatory journey—and offers a timely reminder that Black History is not all bleak.
Brown Beauty

Brown Beauty

Author: Laila Haidarali
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 1479838373
Pages: 368
Year: 2018-08-28
Examines how the media influenced ideas of race and beauty among African American women from the Harlem Renaissance to World War II. Between the Harlem Renaissance and the end of World War II, a complicated discourse emerged surrounding considerations of appearance of African American women and expressions of race, class, and status. Brown Beauty considers how the media created a beauty ideal for these women, emphasizing different representations and expressions of brown skin. Haidarali contends that the idea of brown as a “respectable shade” was carefully constructed through print and visual media in the interwar era. Throughout this period, brownness of skin came to be idealized as the real, representational, and respectable complexion of African American middle class women. Shades of brown became channels that facilitated discussions of race, class, and gender in a way that would develop lasting cultural effects for an ever-modernizing world. Building on an impressive range of visual and media sources—from newspapers, journals, magazines, and newsletters to commercial advertising—Haidarali locates a complex, and sometimes contradictory, set of cultural values at the core of representations of women, envisioned as “brown-skin.” She explores how brownness affected socially-mobile New Negro women in the urban environment during the interwar years, showing how the majority of messages on brownness were directed at an aspirant middle-class. By tracing brown’s changing meanings across this period, and showing how a visual language of brown grew into a dynamic racial shorthand used to denote modern African American womanhood, Brown Beauty demonstrates the myriad values and judgments, compromises and contradictions involved in the social evaluation of women. This book is an eye-opening account of the intense dynamics between racial identity and the influence mass media has on what, and who we consider beautiful.
Sandlot Seasons

Sandlot Seasons

Author: Rob Ruck
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISBN: 0252063422
Pages: 238
Year: 1993-01-01
A new preface updates this richly detailed look at the major role sport played in shaping Pittsburgh's black community from the Roaring Twenties through the Korean War. Rob Ruck reveals how sandlot, amateur, and professional athletics helped black Pittsburgh realize its potential for self-organization, expression, and creativity.
The Oxford Handbook of American Immigration and Ethnicity

The Oxford Handbook of American Immigration and Ethnicity

Author: Ronald H. Bayor
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190612886
Pages: 640
Year: 2016-06-01
Scholarship on immigration to America is a coin with two sides: it asks both how America changed immigrants, and how they changed America. Were the immigrants uprooted from their ancestral homes, leaving everything behind, or were they transplanted, bringing many aspects of their culture with them? Although historians agree with the transplantation concept, the notion of the melting pot, which suggests a complete loss of the immigrant culture, persists in the public mind. The Oxford Handbook of American Immigration and Ethnicity bridges this gap and offers a comprehensive and nuanced survey of American racial and ethnic development, assessing the current status of historical research and simultaneously setting the goals for future investigation. Early immigration historians focused on the European migration model, and the ethnic appeal of politicians such as Fiorello La Guardia and James Michael Curley in cities with strong ethno-political histories like New York and Boston. But the story of American ethnicity goes far beyond Ellis Island. Only after the 1965 Immigration Act and the increasing influx of non-Caucasian immigrants, scholars turned more fully to the study of African, Asian and Latino migrants to America. This Handbook brings together thirty eminent scholars to describe the themes, methodologies, and trends that characterize the history and current debates on American immigration. The Handbook's trenchant chapters provide compelling analyses of cutting-edge issues including identity, whiteness, borders and undocumented migration, immigration legislation, intermarriage, assimilation, bilingualism, new American religions, ethnicity-related crime, and pan-ethnic trends. They also explore the myth of "model minorities" and the contemporary resurgence of anti-immigrant feelings. A unique contribution to the field of immigration studies, this volume considers the full racial and ethnic unfolding of the United States in its historical context.
The WPA History of the Negro in Pittsburgh

The WPA History of the Negro in Pittsburgh

Author: Laurence A. Glasco
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
ISBN: 0822970848
Pages: 432
Year: 2004-06-15
The monumental American Guide Series, published by the Federal Writers’ Project, provided work to thousands of unemployed writers, editors, and researchers in the midst of the Great Depression. Featuring books on states, cities, rivers, and ethnic groups, it also opened an unprecedented view into the lives of the American people during this time. Untold numbers of projects in progress were lost when the program was abruptly shut down by a hostile Congress in 1939. One of those, "The Negro in Pittsburgh," lay dormant in the Pennsylvania State Library until it was microfilmed in 1970. The WPA History of the Negro in Pittsburgh marks the first publication of this rich body of information. This unique historical study of the city’s black population features articles on civil rights, social class, lifestyle, culture, folklore, and institutions from colonial times through the 1930s.
Teenie Harris, Photographer

Teenie Harris, Photographer

Author: Cheryl Finley, Teenie Harris, Laurence Admiral Glasco, Joe William Trotter
Publisher:
ISBN: 0822944146
Pages: 192
Year: 2011
"Charles "Teenie" Harris (1908-1998) photographed the events and daily life of African Americans for the Pittsburgh Courier, one of the nation's most influential Black newspapers. From the 1930s to 1970s, Harris created a richly detailed record of public personalities, historic events, and the lives of average people. In 2001, Carnegie Museum of Art purchased Harris's archive of nearly 80,000 photographic negatives, few of which are titled and dated; the archive is considered one of the most important documentations of 20th?century African American life (www.cmoa.org/teenie). The book will serve as the definitive publication on the life and work of Teenie Harris, consisting of three significant essays: Cheryl Finley, assistant professor in the history of art at Cornell University, offers the first thorough analysis of Harris as an artist, situating him within the history of 20th?century African American art as well as American documentary and vernacular photography; Larry Glasco, associate professor of history at the University of Pittsburgh, draws on new research to present a detailed biography of the photographer; and Joe Trotter, professor of history and social justice at Carnegie Mellon University, explores the social and historical context of Harris's photographs. The book will also include a foreword by Deborah Willis, professor at the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU. In addition to comparative illustrations within the essays, the book includes 100 plates of Harris's signature work and a complete bibliography and chronology"--
The Ghetto in Global History

The Ghetto in Global History

Author: Wendy Z. Goldman, Joe William Trotter, Jr.
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351584103
Pages: 360
Year: 2017-11-27
The Ghetto in Global History explores the stubborn tenacity of ‘the ghetto’ over time. As a concept, policy, and experience, the ghetto has served to maintain social, religious, and racial hierarchies over the past five centuries. Transnational in scope, this book allows readers to draw thought-provoking comparisons across time and space among ghettos that are not usually studied alongside one another. The volume is structured around four main case studies, covering the first ghettos created for Jews in early modern Europe, the Nazis' use of ghettos, the enclosure of African Americans in segregated areas in the United States, and the extreme segregation of blacks in South Africa. The contributors explore issues of discourse, power, and control; examine the internal structures of authority that prevailed; and document the lived experiences of ghetto inhabitants. By discussing ghettos as both tools of control and as sites of resistance, this book offers an unprecedented and fascinating range of interpretations of the meanings of the "ghetto" throughout history. It allows us to trace the circulation of the idea and practice over time and across continents, revealing new linkages between widely disparate settings. Geographically and chronologically wide-ranging, The Ghetto in Global History will prove indispensable reading for all those interested in the history of spatial segregation, power dynamics, and racial and religious relations across the globe.
Workers on Arrival

Workers on Arrival

Author: Joe William Trotter
Publisher: University of California Press
ISBN: 0520299450
Pages: 328
Year: 2019-01-08
From the ongoing issues of poverty, health, housing and employment to the recent upsurge of lethal police-community relations, the black working class stands at the center of perceptions of social and racial conflict today. Journalists and public policy analysts often discuss the black poor as “consumers” rather than “producers,” as “takers” rather than “givers,” and as “liabilities” instead of “assets.” In his engrossing new history, Workers on Arrival, Joe William Trotter, Jr. refutes these perceptions by charting the black working class’s vast contributions to the making of America. Covering the last four hundred years since Africans were first brought to Virginia in 1619, Trotter traces black workers’ complicated journey from the transatlantic slave trade through the American Century to the demise of the industrial order in the 21st century. At the center of this compelling, fast-paced narrative are the actual experiences of these African American men and women. A dynamic and vital history of remarkable contributions despite repeated setbacks, Workers on Arrival expands our understanding of America’s economic and industrial growth, its cities, ideas, and institutions, and the real challenges confronting black urban communities today.
Smoketown

Smoketown

Author: Mark Whitaker
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501122398
Pages: 432
Year: 2018-01-30
“Smoketown brilliantly offers us a chance to see this other black renaissance and spend time with the many luminaries who sparked it…It’s thanks to such a gifted storyteller as Whitaker that this forgotten chapter of American history can finally be told in all its vibrancy and glory.”—The New York Times Book Review The other great Renaissance of black culture, influence, and glamour burst forth joyfully in what may seem an unlikely place—Pittsburgh, PA—from the 1920s through the 1950s. Today black Pittsburgh is known as the setting for August Wilson’s famed plays about noble but doomed working-class strivers. But this community once had an impact on American history that rivaled the far larger black worlds of Harlem and Chicago. It published the most widely read black newspaper in the country, urging black voters to switch from the Republican to the Democratic Party and then rallying black support for World War II. It fielded two of the greatest baseball teams of the Negro Leagues and introduced Jackie Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers. Pittsburgh was the childhood home of jazz pioneers Billy Strayhorn, Billy Eckstine, Earl Hines, Mary Lou Williams, and Erroll Garner; Hall of Fame slugger Josh Gibson—and August Wilson himself. Some of the most glittering figures of the era were changed forever by the time they spent in the city, from Joe Louis and Satchel Paige to Duke Ellington and Lena Horne. Mark Whitaker’s Smoketown is a captivating portrait of this unsung community and a vital addition to the story of black America. It depicts how ambitious Southern migrants were drawn to a steel-making city on a strategic river junction; how they were shaped by its schools and a spirit of commerce with roots in the Gilded Age; and how their world was eventually destroyed by industrial decline and urban renewal. Whitaker takes readers on a rousing, revelatory journey—and offers a timely reminder that Black History is not all bleak.
The Great War and the Culture of the New Negro

The Great War and the Culture of the New Negro

Author: Mark Whalan
Publisher:
ISBN: 0813032067
Pages: 303
Year: 2008
More than 200,000 African American soldiers fought in World War I, and returning troops frequently spoke of "color-blind" France. Such cosmopolitan experiences, along with the brutal, often desegregated no-man's-land between the trenches, forced African American artists and writers to reexamine their relationship to mainstream (white) American culture. The war represented a seminal moment for African Americans, and in the 1920s and 1930s it became a touchstone for such diverse cultural concerns as the pan-African impulse, the burgeoning civil rights movement, and the redefinition of black masculinity. In examining the legacy of the Great War on African American culture, Mark Whalan considers the work of such canonical writers as W.E.B. Du Bois, Langston Hughes, Nella Larsen, and Alain Locke. In addition, he considers the legacy of the war for African Americans as represented in film, photography, and anthropology, with a particular focus on the photographer James VanDerZee.
Toxic Communities

Toxic Communities

Author: Dorceta Taylor
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 1479861626
Pages: 352
Year: 2014-06-20
From St. Louis to New Orleans, from Baltimore to Oklahoma City, there are poor and minority neighborhoods so beset by pollution that just living in them can be hazardous to your health. Due to entrenched segregation, zoning ordinances that privilege wealthier communities, or because businesses have found the ‘paths of least resistance,’ there are many hazardous waste and toxic facilities in these communities, leading residents to experience health and wellness problems on top of the race and class discrimination most already experience. Taking stock of the recent environmental justice scholarship, Toxic Communities examines the connections among residential segregation, zoning, and exposure to environmental hazards. Renowned environmental sociologist Dorceta Taylor focuses on the locations of hazardous facilities in low-income and minority communities and shows how they have been dumped on, contaminated and exposed. Drawing on an array of historical and contemporary case studies from across the country, Taylor explores controversies over racially-motivated decisions in zoning laws, eminent domain, government regulation (or lack thereof), and urban renewal. She provides a comprehensive overview of the debate over whether or not there is a link between environmental transgressions and discrimination, drawing a clear picture of the state of the environmental justice field today and where it is going. In doing so, she introduces new concepts and theories for understanding environmental racism that will be essential for environmental justice scholars. A fascinating landmark study, Toxic Communities greatly contributes to the study of race, the environment, and space in the contemporary United States.
August Wilson

August Wilson

Author: Laurence A. Glasco, Christopher Rawson
Publisher:
ISBN: 099693720X
Pages: 182
Year: 2015-12-15
August Wilson is one of America's great playwrights. He lived in Pittsburgh from his birth in 1945 to 1978, when he moved to St. Paul, MN, and later to Seattle, WA. He died in 2005 and is buried in Pittsburgh.Wilson composed 10 plays chronicling the African American experience in each decade of the twentieth century--and he set nine of those plays in Pittsburgh's Hill District. He turned the history of a place into great theater. His plays, including Fences, The Piano Lesson, Two Trains Running, Jitney, Gem of the Ocean, and Radio Golf have become classics of the American stage.August Wilson: Pittsburgh Places in His Life and Plays guides visitors to key sites in the playwright's life and work in the Hill District and beyond. This guidebook enriches the understanding of those who have seen or read his plays, inspires others to do so, and educates all to the importance of respecting, caring for, and preserving the Pittsburgh places that shaped, challenged, and nurtured August Wilson's rich, creative legacy.
Black Milwaukee

Black Milwaukee

Author: Joe William Trotter
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISBN: 0252060350
Pages: 302
Year: 1985
Other historians have tended to treat black urban life mainly in relation to the ghetto experience, but in Black Milwaukee, Joe William Trotter Jr. offers a new perspective that complements yet also goes well beyond that approach. The blacks in Black Milwaukee were not only ghetto dwellers; they were also industrial workers. The process by which they achieved this status is the subject of Trotter's ground-breaking study. This second edition features a new preface and acknowledgments, an essay on African American urban history since 1985, a prologue on the antebellum and Civil War roots of Milwaukee's black community, and an epilogue on the post-World War II years and the impact of deindustrialization, all by the author. Brief essays by four of Trotter's colleagues--William P. Jones, Earl Lewis, Alison Isenberg, and Kimberly L. Phillips--assess the impact of the original Black Milwaukee on the study of African American urban history over the past twenty years.