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And We Are Not Saved: The Elusive Quest For Racial Justice Paperback – March 31, 1989


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And We Are Not Saved: The Elusive Quest For Racial Justice + Making Crime Pay: Law and Order in Contemporary American Politics (Studies in Crime and Public Policy) + Death by Design: Capital Punishment As a Social Psychological System (American Psychology-Law Society)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Basic Books (March 31, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 046500329X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0465003297
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #712,266 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this expansion of a foreword to a 1985 issue of the Harvard Law Review on the Supreme Court, Harvard Law School professor Bell (Race, Racism and American Law, etc.) asserts that although racial equality has been legally affirmed, economic equality after initial gains is retrogressing despite affirmative action. Lack of enforcement of legislation is partly to blame, he maintains, as are problems concerned as much with social class as color, notably self-interest of a dominant white society. Discussing unresolved racial contradictions of the Constitution, still largely responsible, in Bell's view, for racist attitudes, he uses ingenious metaphorical tales to illustrate aspects of racial injustice that still obtain. He charges that whites have benefited more than blacks from civil-rights reforms, citing desegregation of schools and the 14th Amendment and other measures that extend constitutional coverage to all citizens. He suggests the formation of a coalition of disadvantaged blacks and whites, urging that entitlement standards include class as well as racial disadvantage.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Bell, a professor of law at Harvard, addresses the problem of race in a novel way. Rather than using a dry "casebook" approach, he makes his point through fantasy. A mythical character, Geneva Crenshaw, reveals through ten "Celestial Chronicles" the painful "truth" about recent civil rights laws and court cases: They have, she (and Bell) argue, more clearly benefited the white majority than the black minority. Only through a recapturing of Tom Watson's dreamseeing race as a function of classcan meaningful change occur. Although the fantasy device unfortunately becomes stilted and strained, this provocative work is recommended for large public and university libraries. Anthony O. Edmonds, History Dept., Ball State Univ., Muncie, Ind.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 28, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book provides a chilling account of traditional race relations in the United States, and also forces the reader to confront the problems with many of the proposed modern solutions. I recommend this book to anyone who has ever grappled with the issue of race in this country--even if one does not agree with all of Bell's analysis, the level of thought provoking questions and challenges are outstanding!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lynn Meissner on February 5, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I thought this book brought a fresh new perspective to various debates about racial inequality in the U.S. The book is a series of allegories, called "Chronicles", which make the issues clearer and the book easier to read. The discussions after each chronicle raised some very thought-provoking questions. The sci-fi aspect of the chronicles makes them more fun to read while not detracting from one's ability to examine them and reflect on the real issues.

Only real downside to this book is that in 2010, this book is a bit outdated. I was left wondering how the main characters would discuss these issues in today's racial climate. Also, at times the legal discussions were a bit hard to follow, though they were still easier than other similar works I've read. (I have no legal background).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By scholar-activist on April 29, 2014
Format: Paperback
I have been thinking about racism and U.S. politics for years. Not until I read Derek Bell's book did I understand that even actions we have always seen as positive in race relations, like Brown v. Board of Education, were driven by the bigger economic and political considerations of wealthy Americans. Great book......poetically written also!!!
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By Jessica Lee on October 1, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Fast shipping but the cover was a little folded.
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