Black Metropolis is perhaps the founding document of African-American studies, a classic work of sociology that still resonates today. It is a paradigmatic expression of the Chicago School of sociology, however, a school that today stands in some disrepute, at least in some circles. Indirectly, it was the target of James Baldwin's famous attack on Richard Wright in his essay, Everybody's Protest Novel. The claim of the criticism has been that the Chicago School, due to its insistance upon using a "scientific approach", merely reproduces the very terms under which African-Americans have been oppressed--a claim that has proceeded under the warrant of European intellectuals such as Theodor Adorno. Still, Black Metropolis is a landmark study, and, unfortunately, many if not most of its observations and conclusions remain true today, and in fact it could be argued that conditions in the Black Belt of Chicago have gotten worse, not better, since 1945, the year of Black Metropolis' publication--which lends a certain credence to the criticisms mentioned above, though perhaps it should be qualified by saying that they are not so much criticisms of the Chicago School as they are criticisms of American society. Since then, as we know, we have witnessed a great shift in American public opinion away from what some consider to be the excesses of those days; so much so, in fact, that the work of Black Metropolis may again be regarded as a profoundly useful book. Embodying American liberalism as it does--which counted as a grave sin thirty years ago--Black Metropolis may possibly be due for a fresh look.