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The White Scourge

Author: Neil Foley
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520918528
Size: 17.73 MB
Format: PDF
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In a book that fundamentally challenges our understanding of race in the United States, Neil Foley unravels the complex history of ethnicity in the cotton culture of central Texas. This engrossing narrative, spanning the period from the Civil War through the collapse of tenant farming in the early 1940s, bridges the intellectual chasm between African American and Southern history on one hand and Chicano and Southwestern history on the other. The White Scourge describes a unique borderlands region, where the cultures of the South, West, and Mexico overlap, to provide a deeper understanding of the process of identity formation and to challenge the binary opposition between "black" and "white" that often dominates discussions of American race relations. In Texas, which by 1890 had become the nation's leading cotton-producing state, the presence of Mexican sharecroppers and farm workers complicated the black-white dyad that shaped rural labor relations in the South. With the transformation of agrarian society into corporate agribusiness, white racial identity began to fracture along class lines, further complicating categories of identity. Foley explores the "fringe of whiteness," an ethno-racial borderlands comprising Mexicans, African Americans, and poor whites, to trace shifting ideologies and power relations. By showing how many different ethnic groups are defined in relation to "whiteness," Foley redefines white racial identity as not simply a pinnacle of status but the complex racial, social, and economic matrix in which power and privilege are shared. Foley skillfully weaves archival material with oral history interviews, providing a richly detailed view of everyday life in the Texas cotton culture. Addressing the ways in which historical categories affect the lives of ordinary people, The White Scourge tells the broader story of racial identity in America; at the same time it paints an evocative picture of a unique American region. This truly multiracial narrative touches on many issues central to our understanding of American history: labor and the role of unions, gender roles and their relation to ethnicity, the demise of agrarian whiteness, and the Mexican-American experience.

The United States Of The United Races

Author: Greg Carter
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814772498
Size: 60.63 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
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“This provocative, ambitious, and important book rewrites U.S. history, placing foundational leaders, unheralded prophets, insurgent social movements, pivotal judicial decisions, and central cultural values within an unfolding story of ongoing appeals to interracial mixing as a positive good. Deeply researched, deftly argued, and impressively able to move beyond the two categories of black and white, The United States of the United Races makes the mixed race movements of the recent past resonate with their many antecedents, showing the complex ways in which an emphasis on mixture has both deployed and destabilized racial categories.” —David Roediger, co-author of The Production of Difference Barack Obama’s historic presidency has re-inserted mixed race into the national conversation. While the troubled and pejorative history of racial amalgamation throughout U.S. history is a familiar story, The United States of the United Races reconsiders an understudied optimist tradition, one which has praised mixture as a means to create a new people, bring equality to all, and fulfill an American destiny. In this genealogy, Greg Carter re-envisions racial mixture as a vehicle for pride and a way for citizens to examine mixed America as a better America. Tracing the centuries-long conversation that began with Hector St. John de Crevecoeur’s Letters of an American Farmer in the 1780s through to the Mulitracial Movement of the 1990s and the debates surrounding racial categories on the U.S. Census in the twenty-first century, Greg Carter explores a broad range of documents and moments, unearthing a new narrative that locates hope in racial mixture. Carter traces the reception of the concept as it has evolved over the years, from and decade to decade and century to century, wherein even minor changes in individual attitudes have paved the way for major changes in public response. The United States of the United Races sweeps away an ugly element of U.S. history, replacing it with a new understanding of race in America. Greg Carter is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Native Speakers

Author: María Eugenia Cotera
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 0292718683
Size: 73.89 MB
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In the early twentieth century, three women of color helped shape a new world of ethnographic discovery. Ella Cara Deloria, a Sioux woman from South Dakota, Zora Neale Hurston, an African American woman from Florida, and Jovita González, a Mexican American woman from the Texas borderlands, achieved renown in the fields of folklore studies, anthropology, and ethno-linguistics during the 1920s and 1930s. While all three collaborated with leading male intellectuals in these disciplines to produce innovative ethnographic accounts of their own communities, they also turned away from ethnographic meaning making at key points in their careers and explored the realm of storytelling through vivid mixed-genre novels centred on the lives of women. In this book, Cotera offers an intellectual history situated in the "borderlands" between conventional accounts of anthropology, women's history, and African American, Mexican American and Native American intellectual genealogies. At its core is also a meditation on what it means to draw three women--from disparate though nevertheless interconnected histories of marginalization--into conversation with one another. Can such a conversation reveal a shared history that has been erased due to institutional racism, sexism, and simple neglect? Is there a mode of comparative reading that can explore their points of connection even as it remains attentive to their differences? These are the questions at the core of this book, which offers not only a corrective history centred on the lives of women of colour intellectuals, but also a methodology for comparative analysis shaped by their visions of the world.

Pesos And Dollars

Author: Alicia Marion Dewey
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
ISBN: 1623491754
Size: 78.34 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The commercial world of South Texas between 1880 and 1940 provided an attractive environment for many seeking to start new businesses, especially businesses that linked the markets and finances of the United States and Mexico. Entrepreneurs regularly crossed the physical border in pursuit of business. But more important, more complex, and less well-known were the linguistic, cultural, and ethnic borders they navigated daily as they interacted with customers, creditors, business partners, and employees. Drawing on her expertise as a bankruptcy lawyer, historian Alicia M. Dewey tells the story of how a diverse group of entrepreneurs, including Anglo-Americans, ethnic Mexicans, and European and Middle Eastern immigrants, created and navigated changing business opportunities along the Texas-Mexico border between 1880 and 1940.