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UMass Lowell Library Resources on Racism in the United States

Video: Crash Course about Schools and Social Inequity

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Books: Racial Disparity

Schools Betrayed

The problems commonly associated with inner-city schools were not nearly as pervasive a century ago, when black children in most northern cities attended school alongside white children. In Schools Betrayed, her innovative history of race and urban education, Kathryn M. Neckerman tells the story of how and why these schools came to serve black children so much worse than their white counterparts. Focusing on Chicago public schools between 1900 and 1960, Neckerman compares the circumstances of blacks and white immigrants, groups that had similarly little wealth and status yet came to gain vastly different benefits from their education. Their divergent educational outcomes, she contends, stemmed from Chicago officials' decision to deal with rising African American migration by segregating schools and denying black students equal resources. And it deepened, she shows, because of techniques for managing academic failure that only reinforced inequality. Ultimately, these tactics eroded the legitimacy of the schools in Chicago's black community, leaving educators unable to help their most disadvantaged students. Schools Betrayed will be required reading for anyone who cares about urban education.

Black Female Undergraduates on Campus

Since 1976, increased attention has been paid to the diminishing numbers of Black males in higher education, and rightly so: the total numerical enrollments of Black female undergraduates has outstripped their male counterparts by a factor of nearly 2 to 1. Since intervention, however, the enrollment growth rate among Black males (60 per cent) exceeded that of Black females (40 per cent) (NCES, 2008). Needless to say, this good news was welcomed by many. However, as Cole & Guy-Sheftall (2003) have pointed out, it may be misguided to assume that improving the status of black men will single-handedly solve all the complex problems facing African American communities. Are we indirectly neglecting Black females? And what of their future? The purpose of "Black Female Undergraduates on Campus" is to identify both successes and challenges faced by Black female students accessing and matriculating through institutions of higher education. In illuminating the interactive complexities between persons and place, this volume is aimed toward garnering an understanding of the educational trajectories and experiences of Black females, independent of and in comparison to their peers. Special attention is paid to women pursuing careers in the high demand fields of teacher education and STEM.

Because of Race

In Because of Race, Mica Pollock tackles a long-standing and fraught debate over racial inequalities in America's schools. Which denials of opportunity experienced by students of color should be remedied? Pollock exposes raw, real-time arguments over what inequalities of opportunity based on race in our schools look like today--and what, if anything, various Americans should do about it. Pollock encountered these debates while working at the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights in 1999-2001. For more than two years, she listened to hundreds of parents, advocates, educators, and federal employees talk about the educational treatment of children and youth in specific schools and districts. People debated how children were spoken to, disciplined, and ignored in both segregated and desegregated districts, and how children were afforded or denied basic resources and opportunities to learn. Pollock discusses four rebuttals that greeted demands for everyday justice for students of color inside schools and districts. She explores how debates over daily opportunity provision exposed conflicting analyses of opportunity denial and harm worth remedying. Because of Race lays bare our habits of argument and offers concrete suggestions for arguing more successfully toward equal opportunity.

"Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?"

The classic, bestselling book on the psychology of racism-now fully revised and updated Walk into any racially mixed high school and you will see Black, White, and Latino youth clustered in their own groups. Is this self-segregation a problem to address or a coping strategy? Beverly Daniel Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, argues that straight talk about our racial identities is essential if we are serious about enabling communication across racial and ethnic divides. These topics have only become more urgent as the national conversation about race is increasingly acrimonious. This fully revised edition is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the dynamics of race in America. "An unusually sensitive work about the racial barriers that still divide us in so many areas of life."--Jonathan Kozol

The Economic Civil Rights Movement

Economic inequalities have been perhaps the most enduring problem facing African Americans since the civil rights movement, despite the attention they have received from activists. Although the civil rights movement dealt successfully with injustices like disenfranchisement and segregated public accommodations, economic disparities between blacks and whites remain sharp, and the wealth gap between the two groups has widened in the twenty-first century. The Economic Civil Rights Movement is a collection of thirteen original essays that analyze the significance of economic power to the black freedom struggle by exploring how African Americans fought for increased economic autonomy in an attempt to improve the quality of their lives. It covers a wide range of campaigns ranging from the World War II era through the civil rights and black power movements and beyond. The unfinished business of the civil rights movement primarily is economic. This book turns backward toward history to examine the ways African Americans have engaged this continuing challenge.

Polluted Promises

Association for Humanist Sociology 2007 Book Award co-winner Julian Steward Award 2006 Runner-Up Over the past two decades, environmental racism has become the rallying cry for many communities as they discover the contaminations of toxic chemicals and industrial waste in their own backyards. Living next door to factories and industrial sites for years, the people in these communities often have record health problems and debilitating medical conditions. Melissa Checker tells the story of one such neighborhood, Hyde Park, in Augusta, Georgia, and the tenacious activism of its two hundred African American families. This community, at one time surrounded by nine polluting industries, is struggling to make their voices heard and their community safe again. Polluted Promises shows that even in the post-civil rights era, race and class are still key factors in determining the politics of pollution.

Environmental Justice and Environmentalism

Includes information on Massachusetts

Racial Ecologies

From the Flint water crisis to the Dakota Access Pipeline controversy, environmental threats and degradation disproportionately affect communities of color, with often dire consequences for people's lives and health. Racial Ecologies explores activist strategies and creative responses, such as those of Mexican migrant women, New Zealand Maori, and African American farmers in urban Detroit, demonstrating that people of color have always been and continue to be leaders in the fight for a more equitable and ecologically just world. Grounded in an ethnic-studies perspective, this interdisciplinary collection illustrates how race intersects with Indigeneity, colonialism, gender, nationality, and class to shape our understanding of both nature and environmental harm, showing how and why environmental issues are also racial issues. Indeed, Indigenous, critical race, and postcolonial frameworks are crucial for comprehending and addressing accelerating anthropogenic change, from the local to the global, and for imagining speculative futures. This forward-looking, critical intervention bridges environmental scholarship and ethnic studies and will prove indispensable to activists, scholars, and students alike.

Economic Disparity

Racial Disparity in Education

Environmental Racism