Life in a Black Community

Life in a Black Community : Striving for Equal Citizenship in Annapolis, Maryland, 1902-1952

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Life in a Black Community: Striving for Equal Citizenship in Annapolis, Maryland, 1902-1952 tells the story of a struggle over what it meant to be a citizen of a democracy. For blacks, membership in a democracy meant full and equal participation in the life of the town. For most whites, it meant the full participation of only its white citizens, based on the presumption that their black neighbors were less than equal citizens and had to be kept down. All the dramas of the Jim Crow era-lynching, the KKK, and disenfranchisement, but also black boycotts, petitioning for redress of grievances, lawsuits, and political activism-occurred in Annapolis. As they were challenging white prejudice and discrimination, tenacious black citizens advanced themselves and enriched their own world of churches, shops, clubs, and bars. It took grit for black families to survive. As they pressed on, life slowly improved-for some. Life in a Black Community recounts the tactics blacks used to gain equal rights, details the methods whites employed to deny or curtail their rights, and explores a range of survival and advancement strategies used by black families.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 382 pages
  • 154.94 x 231.14 x 30.48mm | 680.39g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 5 black & white halftones
  • 0739183451
  • 9780739183458

About Hannah Jopling

Hannah Jopling teaches anthropology at Fordham University and Hunter College.show more

Review quote

'We made room for ourselves' (p. xii). This one sentence captures the essence of Hannah Jopling's Life in a Black Community, a historical ethnography that examines how black residents interacted with the white community in the borderstate town of Annapolis, Maryland, from 1902 to 1952, negotiating and demanding their rights as citizens through various individual and collective efforts... [T]he book overall is a valuable contribution to research focused on the relationship between citizenship and race... What is striking about Life in a Black Community is the various ways it can be used in classes and for research on education, race, racism, citizenship, class, community organizing, Jim Crow, and resistance. Many of the examples of 'striving for equal citizenship' that Jopling uses to support her argument can still be seen today, making this historical ethnography soberingly timely and a sad reminder about the ways history reproduces itself when lessons are not learned and enacted. American Anthropologist Here, in Life in a Black Community, is the invisible third of Annapolis. Here is the African America that made the city. It is never seen by historians or preservationists because it is not in official records or great buildings, but is in the ordinary: newspapers and in the ground as archaeology. This is the third that has been regarded as disposable along with the ground where it is buried and in the newspapers printed to be discarded. -- Mark P. Leone, University of Maryland, College Parkshow more

Table of contents

List of Figures Acknowledgments Introduction Publisher's Note Part I "There was so much due us." Chapter 1 Encounter, A Baseball Game, 1902 Chapter 2 Bird's-Eye View 1902-1905 Chapter 3Struggles, 1902-1905 Chapter 4 Own Worlds, 1902-1952 Part II "They took advantage of small opportunities and enlarged them." Chapter 5Encounter, A Hanging, 1919 Chapter 6A Bird's-Eye View, 1905-1919 Chapter 7Struggles, 1905-1919 Chapter 8Own Worlds, 1905-1919 Part III "We made room." Chapter 9Encounter, A Lawsuit, 1938-1940 Chapter 10Bird's-Eye View, 1919-1940 Chapter 11Struggles, 1919-1940 Chapter 12Own Worlds, 1919-1940 Part IV "We wanted what we saw whites had." Chapter 13Encounter, A Parade, 1949 Chapter 14Bird's-eye View, 1940-1949 Chapter 15Struggles, 1940-1949 Chapter 16Own Worlds, 1940-1949 Part V "This was the development stage." Chapter 17Encounter, A Demolition, 1952 Chapter 18Bird's-Eye View, 1949-1952 Chapter 19Struggles, 1949-1952 Chapter 20Own Worlds, 1949-1952 Chapter 21Conclusion Bibliography About the Authorshow more