The Western Journal of Black Studies

Volume 26, Issue 3


Local Rifts Over Jewish Support for African American in the Pre-Civil Rights Era
John Fobanjong

Among the political forces that have contributed to the universality of American democracy, none has played as crucial a role as the modern civil rights movement. This paper studies the internal political dynamics that were at play within the principal groups that supported the movement in the forefront of the struggle for the civil rights of African Americans was the American Jewish community. Existing literature on the contributions of Jews to the success of the modern civil rights movement fails to highlight the internal rift that divided northern and southern Jews during the civil rights struggle. As a result, many of the contributions and personal sacrifices that were made by individuals at the local level have gone unrecorded, unsung, and unrecognized. The present study fills this void. It examines the direct and indirect contributions of Jews to the civil rights of African Americans, and explains the concerns of southern Jewish communities over the overt sttrategies that were adopted by national and northern Jewish organizations.
pp. 125–133


Gender Differences in African American Attitudes Toward Gay Males
Juan Battle and Anthony J. Lemelle, Jr.

The role of homophobia in the African American community is both complex and understudied. One aspect of this complex role is the way gender works in explaining attitudes toward gay men. Using the National Black Politics Study, we examine this very topic. Bivariate and multivariate findings show that (1) African American females express more positive attitudes toward homosexual men than do African American males; and (2) of the variables examined—including age, church attendance, education and household income—gender is the most powerful variable predicting positive attitudes toward homosexual men.
pp. 134–139


Preventing Hate Crime and Profiling Hate Crime Offenders 
James F. Anderson, Laronistine Dyson, and Willie Brooks, Jr.

Despite the Hate Crime Statistics Act, signed into law by President George W. Bush making hate crimes a federal offense, these types of crimes appear to be continuing into the millennium. This paper addresses what can be done to prevent these crimes from occurring in the future and how to profile those with a propensity to act on hate.
pp. 140–148


The Controversy Around Black History
Abul Pitre, Ruth Ray

The controversy surrounding Black History is not new. It began in 1926 when Carter G. Woodson introduced Negro History week and has continued into the twenty-first century. Proponents of Black History believe that it promotes diversity, develops self-esteem, and corrects myths and stereotypes. Opponents argue such curricula are dishonest, divisive, and lack academic credibitlity and rigor. The article highlights Banks' approaches to multicultural reform and illustrates the struggles of schools, that have attempted to infuse Black History into their curricula.
pp. 149–154


The Historical Development of Affirmative Action: An Aggregated Analysis
Shawn Woodhouse

This study attempts to reconstruct the development of equal employment opportunities for African Americans after the Civil War. This phenomenon was addressed through federal intervention that engendered anti-discrimination legislation such as affirmative action. This study provides a recapitulation of various historical accounts of the integration of African Americans into mainstream society, beginning with the Civil War and including legal precedents such as the Brown v. The Board of Education case. Racial discrimination in employment was severely limited when a large number of executive orders were implemented by several different presidents, including Roosevelt, Kennedy and Johnson, to reinforce affirmative action.
pp. 155–158


Discredited and Discreditable Identities: One Black American's Experiences in the United States, Jamaica, and England
Stanley O. Gaines, Jr.

In the present paper, the author reflects on his social-psychological experiences as a Black American within and outside the United States. Using Goffman's (1963) conceptualization of discreditied (e.g., racial) and discreditable (e.g., national) identities as the point of departure, the author comments on responses of social perceivers to him as a target person in the United States, Jamaica, and England. In addition, the author comments on the relevance of Du Bois' (1903/1969) "two souls" to the concepts of race and nationality outside the United States. The author concludes this paper by reflecting on the similarities and differences between his own life experience and the life experiences of renowned Black American historical figures such as Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X.
pp. 159–164


The Atlanta Sociological Laboratory 1896–1924:
A Historical Account of the First American School of Sociology

Earl Wright II

The Atlanta Sociological Laboratory comprised the first American school of sociology. Despite this accomplishment, the contributions of Atlanta University sociologists and social scientists are, mostly, omitted from classical and contemporary discussions concerning early sociologists who contributed to the discipline during its formative years in America. The exclusion of this institution from cononical recognition is astonishing given that W.E.B. Du Bois was the chairperson of the sociology department from 1897–1910 and that Atlanta University housed the first systematic and scientific program of collective sociological research in the United States—the Atlanta University Conference on Negro Problems, 1896–1924. The objective of this investigation is to provide a historical account of the first American school of sociology—the Atlanta Sociological Laboratory.
pp. 165–174


Human Capital and the Performance of African Immigrants
in the U.S. Labor Market

Augustine J. Kposowa

This study examined the impact of Black race on earnings in the United states. In particular, it compared African Blacks (immigrants) with native-born Black and Whites, and White immigrants. It was theorized that ethnic stratification, rather than ethnic assimilation better explains the performance of African immigrants in the U.S. labor market. Multiple regression (OLS) models were fitted to data from the 1980 and 1990 U.S. population censuses. Results showed that in both 1980 and 1990, African immigrants, had the highest educational attainment among the four groups. Despite this educational advantage, analysis by race and immigration status showed that in 1980, earnings returns to education for Africans were the lowest (b=$371 for African immigrants, b=$448 for native-born Blacks, b=$436 for foreign-born Whites, and b=$671 for native-born Whites). By 1990, African immigrants had achieved earnings parity with their native-born Black counterparts. Earnings returns to education for Africans were, however, less than those among native and foreign-born Whites (b-$1221 for Africans, b=$1206 for native-born Blacks, b=$1348 for foreign-born Whites, and b=$1931 for native-born Whites). The study observed a racial hierarchy in earnings, with Whites at the top, followed by African Americans, and then Africans. Findings in both 1980 and 1990 held even after taking human capital characteristic into account, and controlling for possible confounders, such as duration of U.S. residence, English language proficiency, sex, marital status, fertility, health, and labor supply. It was concluded that in the U.S. labor market, African immigrants and native-born Blacks appear to be uniquely disadvantaged by their race.
pp. 175–183

Book Reviews

Contempory Black Men's Fiction and Drama
Author: Keith Clark
Reviewed By: LaMonda Horton-Stallings

A Native American Theology
Authors: Clara Sue Kenwell, Homer Noley, George E. Tinker
Reviewed By: Alan L. Chan

Slavery and Crime in Missouri
Author: Harriet C. Frazier
Reviewed By: Steven J. Ramold






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