Like a good love story that crosses class, race, and defies social mores? Then you'll want to have a look at Love across the Color Line.... This book examines a collection of letters written by a white working-class woman to her African American lover in 1907 and 1908.... Primary sources dealing with working-class sexual mores are uncommon enough; the added dimension of interracial intimacy makes these documents unique.(Feminist Bookstore News)
While its focus rests unmistakably on the letters themselves, the volume includes three essays that help to place them and the stories of their writer and recipient in historical context.... Love across the Color Line reminds us that the story of race relations in the United States is more vast, and the task of recovering it more varied, than we have imagined.(Women's Review of Books)
Of interest not only to the historian and the social scientist, but also to the lay reader, the letters and essays that explore them bring to life the common and uncommon experiences of ordinary people who, without such evidence of their thoughts and concerns, would have been forever lost to the past.(Virginia Quarterly Review)
The letters provide a rare glimpse into interracial love among the working class of western Massachusetts.... This work is a pedagogical mint in research methodology.(Journal of Women's History)
This work is more than a carefully documented study of relationships; it is also an excellent work of historical detection. A valuable source for training historians, especially African American and women's historians, in the use of local records and the development of historical context.(Choice)
Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz teaches American studies and history at Smith College. Her books include Alma Mater and The Power and Passion of M. Carey Thomas.
Kathy Peiss teaches history at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her latest book is Hope in a Jar: The Making of America's Beauty Culture.