Crossroads at Clarksdale: The Black Freedom Struggle in the Mississippi Delta after World War II

Crossroads at Clarksdale: The Black Freedom Struggle in the Mississippi Delta after World War II

by Françoise N. Hamlin
     
 

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Weaving national narratives from stories of the daily lives and familiar places of local residents, Francoise Hamlin chronicles the slow struggle for black freedom through the history of Clarksdale, Mississippi. Hamlin paints a full picture of the town over fifty years, recognizing the accomplishments of its diverse African American community and strong NAACP branch,…  See more details below

Overview

Weaving national narratives from stories of the daily lives and familiar places of local residents, Francoise Hamlin chronicles the slow struggle for black freedom through the history of Clarksdale, Mississippi. Hamlin paints a full picture of the town over fifty years, recognizing the accomplishments of its diverse African American community and strong NAACP branch, and examining the extreme brutality of entrenched power there. The Clarksdale story defies triumphant narratives of dramatic change, and presents instead a layered, contentious, untidy, and often disappointingly unresolved civil rights movement.
Following the black freedom struggle in Clarksdale from World War II through the first decade of the twenty-first century allows Hamlin to tell multiple, interwoven stories about the town's people, their choices, and the extent of political change. She shows how members of civil rights organizations--especially local leaders Vera Pigee and Aaron Henry--worked to challenge Jim Crow through fights against inequality, police brutality, segregation, and, later, economic injustice. With Clarksdale still at a crossroads today, Hamlin explores how to evaluate success when poverty and inequality persist.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Adds much to the story of civil rights in Clarksdale and beyond . . . [and] provides an incredibly rich account of race, class, gender, generational, and organizational tensions within the civil rights movement.--Journal of Southern History

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807835494
Publisher:
The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date:
05/28/2012
Series:
The John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture
Edition description:
1
Pages:
392
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
A sweeping, moving, and pathbreaking history of a half century of civil rights activism in Clarksdale, Mississippi. Francoise Hamlin gracefully runs an integrated gender, class, generational, and race analysis throughout the book to permanently shift and transform our understanding of the black freedom struggle. Crossroads at Clarksdale jumps off the page.--Annelise Orleck, Dartmouth College

Meet the Author

Francoise N. Hamlin is the Hans Rothfels Assistant Professor of History and Africana Studies at Brown University.

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