the eyes of willie mcgee a tragedy of race sex and secrets in the jim crow south

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The Eyes Of Willie Mcgee

Author : Alex Heard
ISBN : 9780061993565
Genre : History
File Size : 89. 92 MB
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In this gripping saga of race and retribution, Alex Heard (editorial director of Outside magazine) tells a moving and unforgettable story of the deep South that says as much about Mississippi today as it does about the mysteries of the past. In doing so, he evokes the bitter conflicts between black and white, north and south in America.

The Eyes Of Willie Mcgee

Author : Alex Heard
ISBN : 9780061284168
Genre : History
File Size : 49. 78 MB
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A Washington Post Best Book of the Year In 1945, a young African-American man from Laurel, Mississippi, was sentenced to death for allegedly raping Willette Hawkins, a white housewife. The case was barely noticed until Bella Abzug, a young New York labor lawyer, was hired to oversee Willie McGee's appeal. Together with William Patterson, a dedicated black reformer, Abzug risked her life to plead the case. “Free Willie McGee” became an international rallying cry, with supporters flooding President Truman's White House and the U.S. Supreme Court with clemency pleas and famous Americans—including William Faulkner, Albert Einstein, and Norman Mailer—speaking out on McGee's behalf. By 1951, millions worldwide were convinced of McGee's innocence—even though there were serious questions about his claim that the truth involved a secret love affair. In this unforgettable story of justice in the Deep South, Mississippi native Alex Heard reexamines the lasting mysteries surrounding McGee's haunting case.

Fugitive Justice

Author : Steven Lubet
ISBN : 9780674059467
Genre : History
File Size : 50. 26 MB
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In this book, Steven Lubet examines, in detail, three trials on the great issue of fugitive slaves in the 1850’s, the fugitive slave statutes, and how the legal system coped or failed to cope with the apparent inconsistencies between the Constitution supporting slavery and its purpose of guaranteeing certain rights to every man. The first case occurred in 1851 when a white Pennsylvania miller named Caster Hanway faced treason charges based on his participation in the Christiana slave riot. The second trial was of Anthony Burns in Boston, and the third case arose out of the 1858 capture of John Price by Kentucky slavehunters in the abolitionist stronghold of Oberlin, Ohio. The fugitive slave trials also provide modern readers with uncomfortable insights into the nature of slavery itself. With sincere conviction, many northern judges – including some who claimed to oppose slavery – calmly considered the quantum of evidence necessary to turn a human being into property. This book powerfully illuminates the tremendous bravery of the fugitives, the moral courage of their rescuers and lawyers, and, alas, the failure of American legal and political institutions to come to grips with slavery short of civil war.

The Jim Crow Routine

Author : Stephen A. Berrey
ISBN : 9781469620947
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 60. 97 MB
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The South's system of Jim Crow racial oppression is usually understood in terms of legal segregation that mandated the separation of white and black Americans. Yet, as Stephen A. Berrey shows, it was also a high-stakes drama that played out in the routines of everyday life, where blacks and whites regularly interacted on sidewalks and buses and in businesses and homes. Every day, individuals made, unmade, and remade Jim Crow in how they played their racial roles--how they moved, talked, even gestured. The highly visible but often subtle nature of these interactions constituted the Jim Crow routine. In this study of Mississippi race relations in the final decades of the Jim Crow era, Berrey argues that daily interactions between blacks and whites are central to understanding segregation and the racial system that followed it. Berrey shows how civil rights activism, African Americans' refusal to follow the Jim Crow script, and national perceptions of southern race relations led Mississippi segregationists to change tactics. No longer able to rely on the earlier routines, whites turned instead to less visible but equally insidious practices of violence, surveillance, and policing, rooted in a racially coded language of law and order. Reflecting broader national transformations, these practices laid the groundwork for a new era marked by black criminalization, mass incarceration, and a growing police presence in everyday life.

African American History Day By Day A Reference Guide To Events

Author : Karen Juanita Carrillo
ISBN : 9781598843613
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 55. 62 MB
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The proof of any group's importance to history is in the detail, a fact made plain by this informative book's day-by-day documentation of the impact of African Americans on life in the United States. • More than 365 chronologically arranged entries featuring events and information about African Americans • An introduction that overviews the importance of African American history in a day-by-day approach • A preface that explains the scope, methodology, and rationale for coverage • Primary source excerpts for some events and two vetted books and websites for all events

The Politics Of Richard Wright

Author : Jane Anna Gordon
ISBN : 9780813175171
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 58. 39 MB
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A pillar of African American literature, Richard Wright is one of the most celebrated and controversial authors in American history. His work championed intellectual freedom amid social and political chaos. Despite the popular and critical success of books such as Uncle Tom's Children (1938), Black Boy (1945), and Native Son (1941), Wright faced staunch criticism and even censorship throughout his career for the graphic sexuality, intense violence, and communist themes in his work. Yet, many political theorists have ignored his radical ideas. In The Politics of Richard Wright, an interdisciplinary group of scholars embraces the controversies surrounding Wright as a public intellectual and author. Several contributors explore how the writer mixed fact and fiction to capture the empirical and emotional reality of living as a black person in a racist world. Others examine the role of gender in Wright's canonical and lesser-known writing and the implications of black male vulnerability. They also discuss the topics of black subjectivity, internationalism and diaspora, and the legacy of and responses to slavery in America. Wright's contributions to American political thought remain vital and relevant today. The Politics of Richard Wright is an indispensable resource for students of American literature, culture, and politics who strive to interpret this influential writer's life and legacy.

The Mercy Seat

Author : Elizabeth H. Winthrop
ISBN : 9780802165688
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 67. 88 MB
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“One of the finest writers of her generation” (Brad Watson), and author of three previously acclaimed novels, Elizabeth H. Winthrop delivers a brave new book that will launch her distinguished career anew. An incisive, meticulously crafted portrait of race, racism, and injustice in the Jim Crow era South that is as intimate and tense as a stage drama, The Mercy Seat is a stunning account of one town’s foundering over a trauma in their midst. On the eve of his execution, eighteen year old Willie Jones sits in his cell in New Iberia awaiting his end. Across the state, a truck driven by a convict and his keeper carries the executioner’s chair closer. On a nearby highway, Willie’s father Frank lugs a gravestone on the back of his fading, old mule. In his office the DA who prosecuted Willie reckons with his sentencing, while at their gas station at the crossroads outside of town, married couple Ora and Dale grapple with their grief and their secrets. As various members of the township consider and reflect on what Willie’s execution means, an intricately layered and complex portrait of a Jim Crow era Southern community emerges. Moving from voice to voice, Winthrop elegantly brings to stark light the story of a town, its people, and its injustices. The Mercy Seat is a brutally incisive and tender novel from one of our most acute literary observers.

The Mississippi Encyclopedia

Author : Ted Ownby
ISBN : 9781496811592
Genre : Reference
File Size : 87. 64 MB
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The perfect book for every Mississippian who cares about the state, this is a mammoth collaboration in which thirty subject editors suggested topics, over seven hundred scholars wrote entries, and countless individuals made suggestions. The volume will appeal to anyone who wants to know more about Mississippi and the people who call it home. The book will be especially helpful to students, teachers, and scholars researching, writing about, or otherwise discovering the state, past and present. The volume contains entries on every county, every governor, and numerous musicians, writers, artists, and activists. Each entry provides an authoritative but accessible introduction to the topic discussed. The Mississippi Encyclopedia also features long essays on agriculture, archaeology, the civil rights movement, the Civil War, drama, education, the environment, ethnicity, fiction, folklife, foodways, geography, industry and industrial workers, law, medicine, music, myths and representations, Native Americans, nonfiction, poetry, politics and government, the press, religion, social and economic history, sports, and visual art. It includes solid, clear information in a single volume, offering with clarity and scholarship a breadth of topics unavailable anywhere else. This book also includes many surprises readers can only find by browsing.

Fire In A Canebrake

Author : Laura Wexler
ISBN : 9781439125298
Genre : History
File Size : 41. 95 MB
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On that July evening in 1946, the leader counted aloud and the mob of white men fired. Seconds later, the leader counted again, "One, two, three," and the mob fired once more. After the third and final volley of gunshots, the white men got into their cars and drove off, leaving the bullet-ridden bodies of two young black men and two young black women lying in the dirt near Moore's Ford Bridge in rural Walton County, Georgia. Since that summer evening, there have never been as many victims lynched in a single day in America. Now, more than a half century later, Laura Wexler offers the first full account of the Moore's Ford lynching, a murder so brutal it stunned the nation and motivated President Harry Truman to put civil rights at the forefront of his national agenda. With the style of a novelist, the authority of a historian, and the tenacity of a journalist, Wexler recounts the lynching and the resulting four-month FBI investigation. Drawing from interviews, archival sources, and an uncensored FBI report, she takes us deep into the landscape of 1946 Georgia, creating unforgettable portraits of sharecroppers, sheriffs, bootleggers, the victims, and the men who may have killed them. Fire in a Canebrake pursues the legacy of the Moore's Ford lynching into the present, exploring the conflicting memories of Walton County's black and white citizens and examining the testimony of a white man who claims he was a secret witness to the crime. In 2001, the governor of Georgia issued a new reward for information leading to the arrest of the lynchers. Several suspects named in the FBI's 1946 investigation are still alive, and there is no statute of limitations on the crime of murder. Fire in a Canebrake -- a phrase local people used to describe the sound of the fatal gunshots -- is a moving and often frightening tale of violence, sex, and lies. It is also a disturbing snapshot of a divided nation on the brink of the civil rights movement and a haunting meditation on race, history, and the struggle for truth.

Devil S Sanctuary

Author : James L. Dickerson
ISBN : 9781569763162
Genre : History
File Size : 40. 35 MB
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Recalling the state's shameful racist history of lynching, arson, denial of rights, false imprisonment, and other heinous crimes, this riveting narrative explores how Mississippi became a safe haven for the most violent and virulent racists, who were immune to prosecution for their crimes. This sanctuary of the then status quo emerged from the 1956 Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission's efforts to preserve segregation and "Mississippi Values" by declaring the state outside the jurisdiction of the federal government. Analysis of the major crimes, the institutional collusion, delayed and never-delivered justice, and the state's attempts at atonement are interspersed with the authors' recollections of what they saw, heard, and experienced as whites--thus "insiders"--during this troubled time. With commentary extending to the present day, this is both a well-researched history and an eyewitness record of living through an era of judicial, media, and economic terrorism directed against African Americans.

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