Defying Dixie: The Radical Roots of Civil Rights, 1919-1950 by Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore
“Remarkable . . . an eye-opening book [on] the freedom struggle that changed the South, the nation, and the world.” Washington Post The civil rights movement that looms over the 1950s and 1960s was the tip of an iceberg, the legal and political remnant of a broad, raucous, deeply American movement for social justice that flourished from the 1920s through the 1940s. This rich history of that early movement introduces us to a contentious mix of home-grown radicals, labor activists, newspaper editors, black workers, and intellectuals who employed every strategy imaginable to take Dixie down. In a dramatic narrative Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore deftly shows how the movement unfolded against national and global developments, gaining focus and finally arriving at a narrow but effective legal strategy for securing desegregation and political rights.
Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore is the Peter V. and C. Vann Woodward Professor of History, African American Studies, and American Studies at Yale University. Her research interests include twentieth-century U.S. history; African American history since 1865; U.S. women's and gender history since 1865; history of the American South; and reform movements. Her publications include Norton’s Defying Dixie: The Radical Roots of Civil Rights, 1919-1950, which was one of the American Library Association’s Notable Books and the Washington Post’s Best Books of 2008, and she edited Who Were the Progressives? and co-edited Jumpin’ Jim Crow: Southern Politics from Civil War to Civil Rights. Her first book, Gender and Jim Crow: Women and the Politics of White Supremacy in North Carolina, 1896-1920, won the Frederick Jackson Turner Award, the James A. Rawley Prize, the Julia Cherry Spruill Prize, and the Heyman Prize.