- Series: Mercer University Lamar Memorial Lectures Ser. (Book 48)
- Hardcover: 102 pages
- Publisher: University of Georgia Press; First Ed First Printing edition (October 24, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0820324981
- ISBN-13: 978-0820324982
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,363,085 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Brown Decision, Jim Crow, and Southern Identity (Mercer University Lamar Memorial Lectures Ser.) First Ed First Printing Edition
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An erudite and eminently readable corrective to academia's trendy fad of being 'down on Brown.' Professor Cobb's bracing analysis is impressively persuasive.(David J. Garrow author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Bearing the Cross)
Should be read by all who study the Civil Rights movement and the twentieth century South. The perspectives that Cobb advances in these essays are sure to stimulate renewed inquiry into our assumptions about the South and the role of race in crafting its history and heritage.(Arkansas Review)
Cobb's ornery but learned Lamar lectures compose a powerful assertion of the centrality of the Brown decision to the South's racial progress in the twentieth century. Those who have said otherwise get taken to the woodshed in this lively little book.(Robert J. Norrell author of The House I Live In: Race in the American Century)
An extremely useful model of interdisciplinary legal history.(Law and History Review)
A useful tonic for those who have grown tired of the down on Brown crowd of historians and other academics whose chorus of despair amounts to a din of negativity. . . . Responds to the criticism over Brown with insight, cleverness, and powerful historical argument . . . For anyone interested in southern historiography, this book offers a look at the thoughts of a leading practitioner and his take on the major themes of southern history. . . . This book is a good brief look at the issue of southern identity, where it came from and where it is headed. . . . Highly recommended, and will certainly leave the reader wanting to explore the subject even more.(H-Net)
[A] provocative book that promises not only to recast historical debate over Brown, but also to encourage a broader understanding of southern identity. . . . Cobb’s lectures are wonderfully concise and readable. . . . Even the ‘naysayers’ would concede Cobb’s point that despite our inability to live up to the moral implications of the decision, Brown remains a catalytic event that deserves its central place in the history of twentieth-century America(North Carolina Historical Review)
About the Author
<DIV>James C. Cobb is the B. Phinizy Spalding Distinguished Professor of History at the University of Georgia. His numerous publications include Georgia Odyssey, Redefining Southern Culture, The Brown Decision, Jim Crow, and Southern Identity (all Georgia), Away Down South, The Selling of the South: The Southern Crusade for Industrial Development, 1936-1990 and The Most Southern Place on Earth: The Mississippi Delta and the Roots of Regional Identity.</div>
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James C. Cobb (Spalding Distinguished Professor of History at the University of Georgia) responds to what he sees as distortions of Brown's legacy with scholarly guns a'blazing in this series of lectures presented for the Mercer University Lamar Memorial Lectures . In the first chapter, he makes quick work of the revisionists' claims that Jim Crow teetered on the brink of collapse by 1954. The second chapter challenges writers who claim that Brown's contribution to civil rights progress was ultimately less significant than its role in energizing white resistance to it. The final chapter argues that Brown and the ensuing civil rights movement accomplished more than its critics acknowledge, not insignificantly by allowing blacks the opportunity to embrace their identity as southerners. He examines the current trend of black migration to the south, as well as the trend to self-segregate not merely by race, but economic class.
His writing is clear, concise and engaging, his research rock solid and his attitude unabashedly liberal. I appreciated the inclusion of his personal observations as a white Southerner growing up under Jim Crow. And he doesn't mince words; in the final chapter he notes that dismay with the civil rights movement could be due in part to expectations. He writes "Many black and white liberals assumed that removing racial constraints on opportunity would somehow produce an unending stream of Alice Walkers but never a Condoleezza Rice." (Or, for that matter, a Clarence Thomas.)
This slim volume packs a wallop, and is must reading for anyone interested in Brown in particular, or Jim Crow in general.