Racial Reckoning: Prosecuting America's Civil Rights Murders

Racial Reckoning: Prosecuting America's Civil Rights Murders

by Renee C. Romano

Paperback(Reprint)

$21.00
View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details

Overview

Few whites who violently resisted the civil rights struggle were charged with crimes in the 1950s and 1960s. But the tide of a long-deferred justice began to change in 1994, when a Mississippi jury convicted Byron De La Beckwith for the 1963 murder of Medgar Evers. Since then, more than one hundred murder cases have been reopened, resulting in more than a dozen trials. But how much did these public trials contribute to a public reckoning with America’s racist past? Racial Reckoning investigates that question, along with the political pressures and cultural forces that compelled the legal system to revisit these decades-old crimes.

“[A] timely and significant work…Romano brilliantly demystifies the false binary of villainous white men like Beckwith or Edgar Ray Killen who represent vestiges of a violent racial past with a more enlightened color-blind society…Considering the current partisan and racial divide over the prosecution of police shootings of unarmed black men, this book is a must-read for historians, legal analysts, and journalists interested in understanding the larger meanings of civil rights or racially explosive trials in America.”
—Chanelle Rose, American Historical Review

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780674976030
Publisher: Harvard
Publication date: 05/08/2017
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 280
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Renee C. Romano is Professor of History, Comparative American Studies, and Africana Studies at Oberlin College.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Exhuming the Past 1

1 Crimes and Complicity during the Civil Rights Era 15

2 "Jim Crow" Justice 42

3 Reopening Civil Rights-Era Murder Cases 66

4 Civil Rights Crimes in the Courtroom 105

5 Civil Rights Trials and Narratives of Redemption 142

6 From Legal Justice to Social Justice 169

Conclusion: "We Are All Mississippians" 199

Notes 209

Acknowledgments 257

Index 261

Customer Reviews