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Race and Renaissance: African Americans in Pittsburgh since World War II (John D.S. and Aida C. Truxall Books) Hardcover – June 27, 2010

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Race and Renaissance: African Americans in Pittsburgh since World War II (John D.S. and Aida C. Truxall Books) + African Americans in Pittsburgh  (PA)  (Black America)
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Product Details

  • Series: John D.S. and Aida C. Truxall Books
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press; 1 edition (June 27, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0822943913
  • ISBN-13: 978-0822943914
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #808,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“This exquisitely researched book is a fine resource for understanding how deindustrialization and urban renewal shaped Black America post World War II. From these pages emerges a remarkable portrait of a people determined to win full equality and self-determination in spite of mounting obstacles. It is an essential reference for those interested in cities, twentieth-century history, and African American studies.”

—Mindy Thompson Fullilove, Columbia University

“Breaks new ground as the first significant history of the African American community of Pittsburgh since World War II. The authors’ approach is wide-ranging, covering issues of civil rights, housing and segregation, organizational development, and political involvement, among other subjects.  What makes this volume particularly valuable, however, is its placement of Pittsburgh’s black community in the framework of the city’s decline as an industrial center and eventual rebirth as a smaller city with a postindustrial economic base.  It deserves a wide readership.”

—Kenneth L. Kusmer, Temple University  

“Imaginatively conceived, well researched, and engagingly written. Trotter and Day have crafted a new standard for the study of African American community that deepens our understanding of urban black culture formations and the transformations in, and manipulations of, political power. They admirably demonstrate the complexity of African Americans’ efforts to seize the Dream and make real a new birth of freedom.”

—Darlene Clark Hine, Northwestern University

“By no means the last word on the subject . . . only the first, but it issues a wakeup call to the collective civic conscience that is long overdue.”
—Pittsburgh Quarterly

“An excellent book. The authors’ research is exemplary, providing a model for similar studies as well as a reminder for everyone that the civil rights revolution is far from complete. Highly recommended.”

“In providing us with this lucid history of Pittsburgh’s African American community, Trotter and Day shed new light on how past actions inform present conditions in the Steel City’s black neighborhoods. Their case study, the first of its kind on post-war Pittsburgh, will prove especially useful to urban historians seeking new ways to understand African American’s changing roles and responses in the face of the structural reordering of postwar urban America.”
—H-Net Reviews

“Essential reading for historians of race, civil rights, and cities in post-World War II America.“

—Pennsylvania History

About the Author

Joe W. Trotter is Giant Eagle Professor of History and Social Justice, head of the history department, and director of the Center for Africanamerican Urban Studies and the Economy (CAUSE) at Carnegie Mellon University. He is the author of numerous books, including The African American Experience and River Jordan: African American Urban Life in the Ohio Valley.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alan Venable on March 22, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This solid history deserves more readers and reviews, especially from Pittsburghers like me who grew up in the 1950s thinking our city was a pretty fair and decent place for everyone. I've read that people call Pennsylvania "Pittsburgh and Philadelphia with Alabama in between" but hadn't known that Pittsburgh was known to some as "the Mississippi of the North." Painfully and carefully this history documents the deep and often naked discrimination against blacks in Pittsburgh throughout most of the 20th century by the city, both its political parties, its public schools, hospitals, etc., in terms of every major kind of opportunity you can imagine--education, jobs, housing, financing. U.S. Steel, major banks, and other corporations that controlled the city also come off shamefully, even well past mid-century. Our memories grow hazy about those times, but the truth is no young idealist living in the north really needed to go south to become part of Civil Rights. Too bad we didn't find more ways to meet the beast head-on at home.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Joe Trotter brings Pittsburgh to life. Having family and friends from Pittsburgh (my grandfather worked in the mills) the author has made me privy to their struggles with housing and employment, and the atmosphere and culture of the decades following the great war. This should be required reading in high school and college history classes.
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