Twenty-First Century Color Lines: Multiracial Change in Contemporary America

Twenty-First Century Color Lines: Multiracial Change in Contemporary America

Twenty-First Century Color Lines: Multiracial Change in Contemporary America

Twenty-First Century Color Lines: Multiracial Change in Contemporary America

Synopsis

The result of work initiated by the Harvard Civil Rights Project, this collection provides an excellent overview of the contemporary racial and ethnic terrain in the United States. The well-respected contributors toTwenty-First Century Color Linescombine theoretical and empirical perspectives, answering fundamental questions about the present and future of multiracialism in the United States: How are racial and ethnic identities promoted and defended across a spectrum of social, geopolitical and cultural contexts? What do two generations of demographic and social shifts around issues of race look like "on the ground?" What are the socio-cultural implications of changing demographics in the U. S.' And what do the answers to these questions portend for our multiracial future?This illuminating book addresses issues of work, education, family life and nationality for different ethnic groups, including Asians and Latinos as well as African Americans and whites. Such diversity, gathered here in one volume, provides new perspectives on ethnicity in a society marked by profound racial transformations. Contributors: Luis A. Avilés, Juan Carlos Marténez-Cruzado, Nilanjana Dasgupta, Christina Gómez, Gerald Gurin, Patricia Gurin, Anthony Kwame Harrison, Maria-Rosario Jackson, John Matlock, Nancy McArdle, John Mollenkopf, john a. powell, Doris Ramérez, David Roediger, Anayra Santory-Jorge, Jiannbin Lee Shiao, Mia H. Tuan, Katrina Wade-Golden and the editors.

Excerpt

Christopher Edley Jr.

This volume is about the future of integration and inclusion in a multiracial America where aspirations of equal opportunity are at war with endemic civil rights fatigue.

Separate and unequal schools were one of the central elements of the system of Jim Crow laws that defined and enforced the color lines of racial caste in America, and this arena produced some of the most dramatic litigation victories of the modern civil rights movement. the struggle for educational equality has been perhaps a bellwether, and when the Supreme Court began its turn away from court-ordered school desegregation in 1973, there soon followed more backward-leaning decisions in voting and employment, as well. While some of those decisions could be and were ameliorated by congressional action, overall there was a marked deceleration of progress toward thoroughgoing racial reconstruction. in 1996, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Hopwood v. State of Texas that public universities in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi could not consider race when making admissions decisions in order to pursue voluntarily the goal of racial diversity. the court's reasoning was read by many as a sweeping attack on not just the means but even the value of pursuing racial inclusion. the genesis of this volume resides in that decision.

Hopwood served as a clarion call for many in the civil rights community who saw in the court's reasoning not merely another conservative decision erecting another procedural hurdle or substantive speed bump but, rather, the threatened demolition of an important vehicle—voluntary affirmative . . .

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