Power and the Black Community: A Reader on Racial Subordination in the United States

By Sethard Fisher | Go to book overview

4. "The Negro Problem":
A Case History

The following analysis by McWilliams, while consistent with that of Chapter 3, goes beyond the period of slavery. It deals with the crucial Reconstruction phase of black American history and the shift from slavery to " Jim Crow," as well as with events beyond this period. In this treatment we can see the cyclic process of gain and loss for black Americans which is emphasized in subsequent chapters. In addition, It makes clear the historical change In symptoms and symbols of black subordination, and the relentless continuity of the process Itself.


CAREY McWILLIAMS

No domestic social issue has received more attention than "the Negro problem." However the problem is not as old as we think: it dates from the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Indeed it was this act which created the Negro problem—that is, whether to acknowledge the Negro's emancipation, with all the implications, or to pretend that emancipation had some other meaning. Only in this sense has there ever been a Negro problem in the United States.

As a matter of fact, the attempt to relate prejudice to the specific nature of its object is a cunning projection of the prejudice of the dominant group; "cunning" because it passes as scientific curiosity. As long as the majority can pretend that the source of prejudice inheres in the nature of the victim, social action can be indefinitely postponed; there is always still another investigation which must be made. For example, it can hardly be denied that the Negro has been overstudied and overinvestigated; whereas all too little is known about the circumstances under which we came to have a Negro problem. This chapter, therefore, has been designed to provide a natural history of the Negro problem.


"The Habit Makes the Monk"

Historically, racial discrimination in the United States is an outgrowth of slavery, and slavery, by a strange paradox, was a by-product of the

____________________
From Brothers Under the Skin ( 1964), pp. 250-279. Copyright 1942, 1943, 1951 by Carey McWilliams.Copyright 1964 by Little, Brown and Company, reprinted by permission of Little, Brown.

-46-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Power and the Black Community: A Reader on Racial Subordination in the United States
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 454

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.