Catalogue

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Not in our lifetimes : the future of black politics /
Michael C. Dawson.
imprint
Chicago ; London : University of Chicago Press, 2011.
description
xvi, 217 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0226138623 (cloth : alk. paper), 9780226138626 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Chicago ; London : University of Chicago Press, 2011.
isbn
0226138623 (cloth : alk. paper)
9780226138626 (cloth : alk. paper)
contents note
From Katrina to Obama -- Katrina and the Nadir of black politics -- The Obama campaign and the myth of a post-racial America -- Black political economy and the effects of neoliberalism -- On black politics -- The people united? -- Toward new black visions -- Taking the country back.
catalogue key
8211868
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [203]-212) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2011-09-26:
Political science professor Dawson anchors his provocative, partisan but perspicacious, book between two events-the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the election of Barack Obama, which he believes heralds "a dangerous new chapter in American racial politics." Relying heavily upon public opinion statistics in assessing how "illusory is the idea that we live in a post-racial America," he attends to the "huge difference of opinion in how blacks and whites evaluate the import of Katrina" and the ensuing pattern of white rejection of "mainstream African American opinion." The center of his argument is that the transformation of black electoral politics is simply that "some black middle-class, technocratic, super-credentialed, and.safe candidates [have] become now more acceptable to whites." Dawson also considers the impact of immigrants with little shared history of repressive racism and activist struggle, as well as the impact of class divisions. The pessimism implied by Dawson's title, and his analysis, is leavened by his vigorous call to combat "a white-dominated racial order" for the reestablishment of independent black political movements to recreate the progressive coalitions of the 1960s and 1970s. If indeed the " 'state of black America' in some domains is distinctly bleak and distinctly different from the experience of the great majority of white Americans," as Dawson states, then his diagnosis and remedy warrant serious attention. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Reviews
Review Quotes
" Not in Our Lifetimes is vintage Michael Dawson. This book is replete with insights on the black/white public opinion divide in the aftermath of the Katrina crisis. The implications of the increasing class cleavages among African Americans and the growing wave of immigrants for multiracial political alliances are also discussed with authority and remarkable clarity, and provide a backdrop for a compelling argument on why new visions are needed to guide black politics in the twenty-first century. Dawson's penetrating analysis is a must-read."
" Not in Our Lifetimes is vintage Michael Dawson. This book is replete with insights on the black/white public opinion divide in the aftermath of the Katrina crisis. The implications of the increasing class cleavages among African Americans and the growing wave of immigrants for multiracial political alliances are also discussed with authority and remarkable clarity, and provide a backdrop for a compelling argument on why new visions are needed to guide black politics in the twenty-first century. Dawson's penetrating analysis is a must-read."William Julius Wilson, Harvard University
"Taking his patient and prescient eye to modern events, Dawson gives us a clear-eyed look at black America. The popular wish to believe the races are (finally) equal, is unsettled in this sober and illuminating account of black political thought. What DuBois gave us 100 years ago, Dawson offers us today: an empathetic, but critical look at race relations in America today. This is social scientific truth-telling at its best."
"Taking his patient and prescient eye to modern events, Dawson gives us a clear-eyed look at black America. The popular wish to believe the races are (finally) equal, is unsettled in this sober and illuminating account of black political thought. What DuBois gave us 100 years ago, Dawson offers us today: an empathetic, but critical look at race relations in America today. This is social scientific truth-telling at its best."Sudhir Venkatesh, author of Gang Leader for a Day
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, September 2011
Booklist, November 2011
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
While many saw the election of Barack Obama as heralding a new age of racial equality in the US, this text argues that the reality is better illustrated by the debacle following Hurricane Katrina. Racial inequality & structural disadvantages continue & have even been exacerbated by recent changes in American society.
Main Description
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, polls revealed that only 20 percent of African Americans believed that racial equality for blacks would be achieved in their lifetime. But following the election of Barack Obama, that number leaped to more than half. Did that dramatic shift in opinion really reflect a change in the vitality of black politics-and hope for improvement in the lives of African Americans? Or was it a onetime surge brought on by the euphoria of an extraordinary election? With Not in Our Lifetimes , Michael C. Dawson shows definitively that it is the latter: for all the talk about a new post-racial America, the fundamental realities of American racism-and the problems facing black political movements-have not changed. He lays out a nuanced analysis of the persistence of racial inequality and structural disadvantages, and the ways that whites and blacks continue to see the same problems-the disastrous response to Katrina being a prime example-through completely different, race-inflected lenses. In fact, argues Dawson, the new era heralded by Obama's election ist more racially complicated, as the widening class gap among African Americans and the hot-button issue of immigration have the potential to create new fissures for conservative and race-based exploitation. Bringing his account up to the present with a thoughtful account of the rise of the Tea Parties and the largely successful "blackening" of the president, Dawson ultimately argues that black politics remains weak-and that achieving the dream of racial and economic equality will require the sort of coalition-building and reaching across racial divides that have always marked successful political movements. Polemical but clear-eyed, passionate but pragmatic, Not in Our Lifetimes will force us to rethink our easy assumptions about racial progress-and begin the hard work of creating real, lasting change.
Main Description
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, polls revealed that only 20 percent of African Americans believed that racial equality for blacks would be achieved in their lifetime. But following the election of Barack Obama, that number leaped to more than half. Did that dramatic shift in opinion really reflect a change in the vitality of black politics-and hope for improvement in the lives of African Americans? Or was it a onetime surge brought on by the euphoria of an extraordinary election? With Not in Our Lifetimes , Michael C. Dawson shows definitively that it is the latter: for all the talk about a new post-racial America, the fundamental realities of American racism-and the problems facing black political movements-have not changed. He lays out a nuanced analysis of the persistence of racial inequality and structural disadvantages, and the ways that whites and blacks continue to see the same problems-the disastrous response to Katrina being a prime example-through completely different, race-inflected lenses. In fact, argues Dawson, the new era heralded by Obama’s election ist more racially complicated, as the widening class gap among African Americans and the hot-button issue of immigration have the potential to create new fissures for conservative and race-based exploitation. Bringing his account up to the present with a thoughtful account of the rise of the Tea Parties and the largely successful "blackening" of the president, Dawson ultimately argues that black politics remains weak-and that achieving the dream of racial and economic equality will require the sort of coalition-building and reaching across racial divides that have always marked successful political movements. Polemical but clear-eyed, passionate but pragmatic, Not in Our Lifetimes will force us to rethink our easy assumptions about racial progress-and begin the hard work of creating real, lasting change.
Table of Contents
Prologuep. vii
From Katrina to Obamap. 1
Katrina and the Nadir of Black Politicsp. 21
The Obama Campaign and the Myth of a Post-Racial Americap. 63
Black Political Economy and the Effects of Neoliberalism on Black Politicsp. 92
The People United?p. 136
Conclusion: Toward New Black Visionsp. 160
Epilogue: Taking the Country Backp. 181
Acknowledgmentsp. 187
Notesp. 191
Referencesp. 203
Indexp. 213
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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