Reparations: Pro and Con / Edition 1

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"In this short work Alfred L. Brophy, an expert on racial violence, regards the debate over reparations from the 1700s to the present, examining the arguments on both sides of the current debate. Brophy tells the story of the black reparations movement from Thaddeus Stevens, through the dark days of Jim Crow and then the Harlem Renaissance, to critical race theory, and relates it to other movements for racial justice. Most importantly, he cuts through the rhetoric to expose how the actual practice of reparations, such as for Jewish victims of the Holocaust, Native Americans, and for the detainment of Japanese Americans during World War II, has been conducted. Brophy takes us inside litigation and legislatures past and present, examining failed and successful lawsuits, and reparations actions by legislatures, newspapers, schools, and businesses, including apologies and truth commissions. Reparations: Pro and Con concludes with a frank and sober look at the case for reparations and where, if anywhere, the movement is going." A comprehensive yet concise introduction to the moral and legal case for and against reparations, this book offers valuable historical and legal perspective for reparations advocates and critics alike.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Reparations is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the ins and outs of the debate about 'building something better for the future by correcting for past injustice.'"—Harvard Law Review

"A comprehensive yet very accessible book on a controversial outstanding source. Recommended."—CHOICE

"Amidst the often rancorous national debate over reparations for slavery, Alfred Brophy's Reparations: Pro and Con stands out as a work of rare balance and judiciousness. Rather than offering another partisan polemic, Brophy takes seriously the arguments of both advocates and opponents of reparations, illuminating the complex historical, political, legal, and moral questions entailed by any confrontation with historical injustice. Whatever your politics, you will profit from reading this book."—James T. Campbell, author of Middle Passages and Songs of Zion

"Professor Alfred Brophy has written a book about reparations and its contentious qualities that is a must-read for all. While reparations was a dormant subject in the twentieth century, Alfred Brophy has raised it to an exalted status: if you want to know the essence of the debate, this book is for you."—Charles K. Ogletree, Jr., Jesse Climenko Professor, Harvard Law School, and Executive Director of Harvard's Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice

"In spite of our victory over master race theory in World War II, in spite of Brown vs. Board of Education and the heartwrenching victories of the civil rights struggle, Jim Crow lives on in fact if not in law. Brophy's book operates in the realm of fact. How would we act if repairing injustice were the true goal of our hearts? What world would we make? Answering the questions posed in this book is the way to peace, at last."—Mari Matsuda, co-author, with Charles Lawrence, of We Won't Go Back: Making the Case for Affirmative Action and Professor, Georgetown University Law Center

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195304084
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 2/28/2006
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 312
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Alfred L. Brophy is Reef C. Ivey II Professor Law at the University of North Carolina. He is the author of Reconstructing the Dreamland: The Tulsa Riot of 1921: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation and Book Reviews Editor of Law and History Review. He contributed to the report to the Tulsa Race Riot Commission, a body created by the Oklahoma Legislature to investigate the riot and make recommendations for reparations. Brophy has appeared on CNN's News Night with Aaron Brown, NBC Nightly News, NPR's "Fresh Air," the "Tavis Smiley Show," and "Talk of the Nation," and has been quoted in such newspapers as the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and Washington Post.

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Understanding reparations : reparations definitions, goals, history, and theory
1 Reparations definitions 3
2 Black (and other) reparations in history 19
Pt. II Reparations ascendant : the recent renascence of reparations debate and refined reparations theory
3 The modern Black reparations movement : why now, why, and what? 55
4 Against reparations 75
Pt. III Implementing reparations : reparations practice
5 Evaluating reparations lawsuits 97
6 Legislative reparations 141
Pt. IV Possibilities for the future
7 Reparations future, realistic reparations, and models of reparations 167
App. 1 Special field orders, no. 15 (1865) 183
App. 2 A bill (H.R. 29) relative to damages done to loyal men, and for other purposes [confiscation] (1867) 187
App. 3 Slavery Study Bill, H.R. 40, 106th Congress, 1st session (1999) 191
App. 4 California Slavery Era Insurance Registry (2000) 199
App. 5 Chicago Slavery Era Insurance Disclosure Ordinance 2-92-585 (2003) 199
App. 6 President Bush speaks at Goree Island in Senegal (2003) 203
App 7 108th Congress, 2nd session, Senate Joint Resolution 37 (2004) 207
App 8 United States Senate apology for failure to pass anti-lynching legislation, 109th Congress, 1st session 211
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