Black and Blue

Author: Paul Frymer
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 140083726X
Release Date: 2011-06-27
Genre: Political Science

In the 1930s, fewer than one in one hundred U.S. labor union members were African American. By 1980, the figure was more than one in five. Black and Blue explores the politics and history that led to this dramatic integration of organized labor. In the process, the book tells a broader story about how the Democratic Party unintentionally sowed the seeds of labor's decline. The labor and civil rights movements are the cornerstones of the Democratic Party, but for much of the twentieth century these movements worked independently of one another. Paul Frymer argues that as Democrats passed separate legislation to promote labor rights and racial equality they split the issues of class and race into two sets of institutions, neither of which had enough authority to integrate the labor movement. From this division, the courts became the leading enforcers of workplace civil rights, threatening unions with bankruptcy if they resisted integration. The courts' previously unappreciated power, however, was also a problem: in diversifying unions, judges and lawyers enfeebled them financially, thus democratizing through destruction. Sharply delineating the double-edged sword of state and legal power, Black and Blue chronicles an achievement that was as problematic as it was remarkable, and that demonstrates the deficiencies of race- and class-based understandings of labor, equality, and power in America.

Uneasy Alliances

Author: Paul Frymer
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691148014
Release Date: 2010-09-05
Genre: Political Science

Uneasy Alliances is a powerful challenge to how we think about the relationship between race, political parties, and American democracy. While scholars frequently claim that the need to win elections makes government officials responsive to any and all voters, Paul Frymer shows that not all groups are treated equally; politicians spend most of their time and resources on white swing voters--to the detriment of the African American community. As both parties try to attract white swing voters by distancing themselves from blacks, black voters are often ignored and left with unappealing alternatives. African Americans are thus the leading example of a "captured minority." Frymer argues that our two-party system bears much of the blame for this state of affairs. Often overlooked in current discussions of racial politics, the party system represents a genuine form of institutional racism. Frymer shows that this is no accident, for the party system was set up in part to keep African American concerns off the political agenda. Today, the party system continues to restrict the political opportunities of African American voters, as was shown most recently when Bill Clinton took pains to distance himself from African Americans in order to capture conservative votes and win the presidency. Frymer compares the position of black voters with other social groups--gays and lesbians and the Christian right, for example--who have recently found themselves similarly "captured." Rigorously argued and researched, Uneasy Alliances is a powerful challenge to how we think about the relationship between black voters, political parties, and American democracy. In a new afterword, Frymer examines the impact of Barack Obama's election on the delicate relationship between race and party politics in America.

Building an American Empire

Author: Paul Frymer
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400885350
Release Date: 2017-05-02
Genre: Political Science

How American westward expansion was governmentally engineered to promote the formation of a white settler nation Westward expansion of the United States is most conventionally remembered for rugged individualism, geographic isolationism, and a fair amount of luck. Yet the establishment of the forty-eight contiguous states was hardly a foregone conclusion, and the federal government played a critical role in its success. This book examines the politics of American expansion, showing how the government's regulation of population movements on the frontier, both settlement and removal, advanced national aspirations for empire and promoted the formation of a white settler nation. Building an American Empire details how a government that struggled to exercise plenary power used federal land policy to assert authority over the direction of expansion by engineering the pace and patterns of settlement and to control the movement of populations. At times, the government mobilized populations for compact settlement in strategically important areas of the frontier; at other times, policies were designed to actively restrain settler populations in order to prevent violence, international conflict, and breakaway states. Paul Frymer examines how these settlement patterns helped construct a dominant racial vision for America by incentivizing and directing the movement of white European settlers onto indigenous and diversely populated lands. These efforts were hardly seamless, and Frymer pays close attention to the failures as well, from the lack of further expansion into Latin America to the defeat of the black colonization movement. Building an American Empire reveals the lasting and profound significance government settlement policies had for the nation, both for establishing America as dominantly white and for restricting broader aspirations for empire in lands that could not be so racially engineered.

Running Steel Running America

Author: Judith Stein
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9780807864739
Release Date: 2000-11-09
Genre: History

The history of modern liberalism has been hotly debated in contemporary politics and the academy. Here, Judith Stein uses the steel industry--long considered fundamental to the U.S. economy--to examine liberal policies and priorities after World War II. In a provocative revision of postwar American history, she argues that it was the primacy of foreign commitments and the outdated economic policies of the state, more than the nation's racial conflicts, that transformed American liberalism from the powerful progressivism of the New Deal to the feeble policies of the 1990s. Stein skillfully integrates a number of narratives usually treated in isolation--labor, civil rights, politics, business, and foreign policy--while underscoring the state's focus on the steel industry and its workers. By showing how those who intervened in the industry treated such economic issues as free trade and the globalization of steel production in isolation from the social issues of the day--most notably civil rights and the implementation of affirmative action--Stein advances a larger argument about postwar liberalism. Liberal attempts to address social inequalities without reference to the fundamental and changing workings of the economy, she says, have led to the foundering of the New Deal state.

The Origins of the Urban Crisis

Author: Thomas J. Sugrue
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400851218
Release Date: 2014-04-27
Genre: History

Once America's "arsenal of democracy," Detroit is now the symbol of the American urban crisis. In this reappraisal of America’s racial and economic inequalities, Thomas Sugrue asks why Detroit and other industrial cities have become the sites of persistent racialized poverty. He challenges the conventional wisdom that urban decline is the product of the social programs and racial fissures of the 1960s. Weaving together the history of workplaces, unions, civil rights groups, political organizations, and real estate agencies, Sugrue finds the roots of today’s urban poverty in a hidden history of racial violence, discrimination, and deindustrialization that reshaped the American urban landscape after World War II. This Princeton Classics edition includes a new preface by Sugrue, discussing the lasting impact of the postwar transformation on urban America and the chronic issues leading to Detroit’s bankruptcy.

Hard Work

Author: Rick Fantasia
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520240901
Release Date: 2004-06-16
Genre: History

Annotation This book provides an overview of unions and labor in America.

When Movements Anchor Parties

Author: Daniel Schlozman
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400873838
Release Date: 2015-09-01
Genre: Political Science

Throughout American history, some social movements, such as organized labor and the Christian Right, have forged influential alliances with political parties, while others, such as the antiwar movement, have not. When Movements Anchor Parties provides a bold new interpretation of American electoral history by examining five prominent movements and their relationships with political parties. Taking readers from the Civil War to today, Daniel Schlozman shows how two powerful alliances—those of organized labor and Democrats in the New Deal, and the Christian Right and Republicans since the 1970s—have defined the basic priorities of parties and shaped the available alternatives in national politics. He traces how they diverged sharply from three other major social movements that failed to establish a place inside political parties—the abolitionists following the Civil War, the Populists in the 1890s, and the antiwar movement in the 1960s and 1970s. Moving beyond a view of political parties simply as collections of groups vying for preeminence, Schlozman explores how would-be influencers gain influence—or do not. He reveals how movements join with parties only when the alliance is beneficial to parties, and how alliance exacts a high price from movements. Their sweeping visions give way to compromise and partial victories. Yet as Schlozman demonstrates, it is well worth paying the price as movements reorient parties' priorities. Timely and compelling, When Movements Anchor Parties demonstrates how alliances have transformed American political parties.

Building the Judiciary

Author: Justin Crowe
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400842575
Release Date: 2012-03-25
Genre: Political Science

How did the federal judiciary transcend early limitations to become a powerful institution of American governance? How did the Supreme Court move from political irrelevance to political centrality? Building the Judiciary uncovers the causes and consequences of judicial institution-building in the United States from the commencement of the new government in 1789 through the close of the twentieth century. Explaining why and how the federal judiciary became an independent, autonomous, and powerful political institution, Justin Crowe moves away from the notion that the judiciary is exceptional in the scheme of American politics, illustrating instead how it is subject to the same architectonic politics as other political institutions. Arguing that judicial institution-building is fundamentally based on a series of contested questions regarding institutional design and delegation, Crowe develops a theory to explain why political actors seek to build the judiciary and the conditions under which they are successful. He both demonstrates how the motivations of institution-builders ranged from substantive policy to partisan and electoral politics to judicial performance, and details how reform was often provoked by substantial changes in the political universe or transformational entrepreneurship by political leaders. Embedding case studies of landmark institution-building episodes within a contextual understanding of each era under consideration, Crowe presents a historically rich narrative that offers analytically grounded explanations for why judicial institution-building was pursued, how it was accomplished, and what--in the broader scheme of American constitutional democracy--it achieved.

Hardhats Hippies and Hawks

Author: Penny W. Lewis
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 9780801467806
Release Date: 2013-04-12
Genre: History

In the popular imagination, opposition to the Vietnam War was driven largely by college students and elite intellectuals, while supposedly reactionary blue-collar workers largely supported the war effort. In Hardhats, Hippies, and Hawks, Penny Lewis challenges this collective memory of class polarization. Through close readings of archival documents, popular culture, and media accounts at the time, she offers a more accurate "counter-memory" of a diverse, cross-class opposition to the war in Southeast Asia that included the labor movement, working-class students, soldiers and veterans, and Black Power, civil rights, and Chicano activists. Lewis investigates why the image of antiwar class division gained such traction at the time and has maintained such a hold on popular memory since. Identifying the primarily middle-class culture of the early antiwar movement, she traces how the class interests of its first organizers were reflected in its subsequent forms. The founding narratives of class-based political behavior, Lewis shows, were amplified in the late 1960s and early 1970s because the working class, in particular, lacked a voice in the public sphere, a problem that only increased in the subsequent period, even as working-class opposition to the war grew. By exposing as false the popular image of conservative workers and liberal elites separated by an unbridgeable gulf, Lewis suggests that shared political attitudes and actions are, in fact, possible between these two groups.

White Backlash

Author: Marisa Abrajano
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400866489
Release Date: 2015-03-22
Genre: Political Science

White Backlash provides an authoritative assessment of how immigration is reshaping the politics of the nation. Using an array of data and analysis, Marisa Abrajano and Zoltan Hajnal show that fears about immigration fundamentally influence white Americans' core political identities, policy preferences, and electoral choices, and that these concerns are at the heart of a large-scale defection of whites from the Democratic to the Republican Party. Abrajano and Hajnal demonstrate that this political backlash has disquieting implications for the future of race relations in America. White Americans' concerns about Latinos and immigration have led to support for policies that are less generous and more punitive and that conflict with the preferences of much of the immigrant population. America's growing racial and ethnic diversity is leading to a greater racial divide in politics. As whites move to the right of the political spectrum, racial and ethnic minorities generally support the left. Racial divisions in partisanship and voting, as the authors indicate, now outweigh divisions by class, age, gender, and other demographic measures. White Backlash raises critical questions and concerns about how political beliefs and future elections will change the fate of America's immigrants and minorities, and their relationship with the rest of the nation.

Race and the Totalitarian Century

Author: Vaughn Rasberry
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674972995
Release Date: 2016-10-03
Genre: Literary Criticism

Vaughn Rasberry turns to black culture and politics for an alternative history of the totalitarian century. He shows how black writers reimagined the standard anti-fascist, anti-communist narrative through the lens of racial injustice, with the U.S. as a tyrannical force in the Third World but also an agent of Asian and African independence.

Fighting for democracy

Author: Christopher S. Parker
Publisher: Princeton Univ Pr
ISBN: 0691140030
Release Date: 2009-08-17
Genre: History

Fighting for Democracy shows how the experiences of African American soldiers during World War II and the Korean War influenced many of them to challenge white supremacy in the South when they returned home. Focusing on the motivations of individual black veterans, this groundbreaking book explores the relationship between military service and political activism. Christopher Parker draws on unique sources of evidence, including interviews and survey data, to illustrate how and why black servicemen who fought for their country in wartime returned to America prepared to fight for their own equality.Parker discusses the history of African American military service and how the wartime experiences of black veterans inspired them to contest Jim Crow. Black veterans gained courage and confidence by fighting their nation's enemies on the battlefield and racism in the ranks. Viewing their military service as patriotic sacrifice in the defense of democracy, these veterans returned home with the determination and commitment to pursue equality and social reform in the South. Just as they had risked their lives to protect democratic rights while abroad, they risked their lives to demand those same rights on the domestic front.Providing a sophisticated understanding of how war abroad impacts efforts for social change at home, Fighting for Democracy recovers a vital story about black veterans and demonstrates their distinct contributions to the American political landscape.

Reforms at risk

Author: Eric M. Patashnik
Publisher: Princeton Univ Pr
ISBN: 0691119988
Release Date: 2008-08-25
Genre: Business & Economics

Reforms at Riskis the first book to closely examine what happens to sweeping and seemingly successful policy reforms after they are passed. Most books focus on the politics of reform adoption, yet as Eric Patashnik shows here, the political struggle does not end when major reforms become enacted. Why do certain highly praised policy reforms endure while others are quietly reversed or eroded away?Patashnik peers into some of the most critical arenas of domestic-policy reform--including taxes, agricultural subsidies, airline deregulation, emissions trading, welfare state reform, and reform of government procurement--to identify the factors that enable reform measures to survive. He argues that the reforms that stick destroy an existing policy subsystem and reconfigure the political dynamic. Patashnik demonstrates that sustainable reforms create positive policy feedbacks, transform institutions, and often unleash the ''creative destructiveness'' of market forces.Reforms at Riskdebunks the argument that reforms inevitably fail because Congress is prey to special interests, and the book provides a more realistic portrait of the possibilities and limits of positive change in American government. It is essential reading for scholars and practitioners of U.S. politics and public policy, offering practical lessons for anyone who wants to ensure that hard-fought reform victories survive.

States and Power in Africa

Author: Jeffrey Herbst
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400841530
Release Date: 2000-03-06
Genre: Political Science

Theories of international relations, assumed to be universally applicable, have failed to explain the creation of states in Africa. There, the interaction of power and space is dramatically different from what occurred in Europe. In his groundbreaking book, Jeffrey Herbst places the African state-building process in a truly comparative perspective, examining the problem of state consolidation from the precolonial period, through the short but intense interlude of European colonialism, to the modern era of independent states. Herbst's bold contention--that the conditions now facing African state-builders existed long before European penetration of the continent--is sure to provoke controversy, for it runs counter to the prevailing assumption that colonialism changed everything. In identifying how the African state-building process differs from the European experience, Herbst addresses the fundamental problem confronting African leaders: how to extend authority over sparsely settled lands. Indeed, efforts to exert control over vast, inhospitable territories of low population density and varied environmental and geographical zones have resulted in devastating wars, millions of refugees, and dysfunctional governments perpetrating destructive policies. Detailing the precise political calculations of distinct African leaders, Herbst isolates the basic dynamics of African state development. In analyzing how these leaders have attempted to consolidate power, he is able to evaluate a variety of policy alternatives for dealing with the fundamental political challenges facing African states today.