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by Kenneth D. Durr

  • ISBN: 0807827649
  • Category: History
  • Author: Kenneth D. Durr
  • Subcategory: Americas
  • Other formats: lit docx lrf azw
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press; New edition edition (March 24, 2003)
  • Pages: 320 pages
  • FB2 size: 1784 kb
  • EPUB size: 1956 kb
  • Rating: 4.3
  • Votes: 327
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In this nuanced look at white working-class life and politics, Kenneth Durr takes readers into the neighbor-hoods, work-places, and community institutions of blue-collar Baltimore in the decades after World War II. Challenging notions that the "white backlash" of the 1960s and 1970s was driven by increasing race resentment, Durr details the rise of a working-class populism shaped by mistrust of postwar liberalism in the face of urban decline.

Behind the Backlash book Original Title. Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980.

Behind the Backlash book. Behind the Backlash melds ethnic, labor, and political history to paint a rich portrait of urban life-and the sweeping social and economic changes that reshaped America's cities and politics in the late twentieth century. 0807854336 (ISBN13: 9780807854334).

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oceedings{Durr2003BehindTB, title {Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980}, author {Kenneth D. Durr}, year {2003} }. Kenneth D. Durr

Many working-class whites reacted badly and declining home prices became a self-fulfilling prophecy as well as a.Citation: Kenneth J. Heineman.

Many working-class whites reacted badly and declining home prices became a self-fulfilling prophecy as well as a cause of resentment. Then again, as Durr observes, while Jewish neighborhoods were more open to racial integration than Catholic communities, Jews were also the first to flee to leafier locales. The process was the same in 1950s Buffalo and Boston, frequently leading to Democratic Jews and Catholics trading charges of hypocrisy and racism.

All about Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in.

All about Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980 by Kenneth D. Challenging notions that the "white backlash" of the 1960s and 70s was driven by increasing race resentment, Durr examines white working-class life and politics in the neighbourhoods, workplaces and community institutions of blue-collar Baltimore in the decades after World War II. all members.

In 2003, Kenneth D. Durr published Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980, an historical examination of white working-class life and politics in Baltimore during the mid to late 1900s. St. Wenceslaus Church, a historically white Czech-American Roman Catholic church in East Baltimore that is now majority African-American, June 2014. Most White Americans in Baltimore are Christians, generally either Catholic or Protestant

Roderick N. Ryon, Kenneth D.

Roderick N. Published: 1 May 2004. in The Journal of Southern History. The Journal of Southern History, Volume 70; doi:10.

While acknowledging the parochialism and racial exclusivity of white working-class life, Durr adopts an empathetic view of workers and their institutions.

Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980 In this nuanced look at white working-class life and politics in twentieth-century America, Kenneth Durr takes readers into the neighborhoods, workplaces, and community institutions of blue-collar Baltimore in the decades after World War I. While acknowledging the parochialism and racial exclusivity of white working-class life, Durr adopts an empathetic view of workers and their institutions.

In this nuanced look at white working-class life and politics in twentieth-century America, Kenneth Durr takes readers into the neighborhoods, workplaces, and community institutions of blue-collar Baltimore in the decades after World War II. Challenging notions that the "white backlash" of the 1960s and 1970s was driven by increasing race resentment, Durr details the rise of a working-class populism shaped by mistrust of the means and ends of postwar liberalism in the face of urban decline. Exploring the effects of desegregation, deindustrialization, recession, and the rise of urban crime, Durr shows how legitimate economic, social, and political grievances convinced white working-class Baltimoreans that they were threatened more by the actions of liberal policymakers than by the incursions of urban blacks.While acknowledging the parochialism and racial exclusivity of white working-class life, Durr adopts an empathetic view of workers and their institutions. Behind the Backlash melds ethnic, labor, and political history to paint a rich portrait of urban life--and the sweeping social and economic changes that reshaped America's cities and politics in the late twentieth century.
Reviews about Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980 (3):
Cel
When reading Kenneth D. Durr’s <i>Behind the Backlash: White Working-Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980</i>, it does not take long for someone who grew up among people from the northern industrial working-class to find the typical and familiar personality types. Grandparents, uncles, cousins, aunts, neighbors, friends – from the moderate to the extreme, they are all in this book. And, in some ways, Durr’s narrative put questions about them into context and makes more sense of some childhood memories. Durr’s book begs the question – is this group of northern industrial working-class whites really more than the uneducated racists they have historically been painted to be?

Simply put: yes, they are more than they seem. However, they are also what they seem. Durr attempted to put the white working-class of Baltimore into context by examining other factors (outside of race) that affected the formation of their conservative social and political views. For the most part, he succeeded in setting the stage for how this class of Baltimoreans made the transition from New Deal Democrats to Reagan Democrats and later outright Republicans. The white ethnic working classes brought with them the idea that: if you work hard enough, you will succeed in America. They then formed tightly-knit, mostly ethnically-based neighborhood enclaves where they could “work hard enough and succeed in America.”

Durr stressed how this hard work = success mentality drove much of the mentality of Baltimore’s white ethnic working-class. He attempted to use this, as well as class conflict, to supplant the more basic assumption that the white working class was purely and simply racist. And that this racism was the driving force behind the working-class backlash against neighborhood integration, block busting, school desegregation and busing, and the interstates. Overall, he succeeded in providing the reader with alternatives to the “uneducated racist” theory of working-class attitudes.

In his introduction, Durr wrote about how he expected this book to put “the urban blue-collar world in historical context” and to get to “the heart of white working-class protest.” (2, 3) On the first point, his use of a various sources went beyond most existing scholarship to develop a white ethnic working-class context. On the second point, getting to the heart things, he did not quite make his mark. Durr seemed to be entirely too dismissive on the affect of working-class racism. He also overstated the uniqueness of neighborhood associations in working-class Baltimore. Thomas Sugrue discussed Detroit’s working-class neighborhood associations in <i>The Origins of the Urban Crisis</i> and so did Kevin Boyle in <i>Arc of Justice</i>.

Durr’s assessment of the white working-class taking the brunt of integration’s and desegregation’s affects on urban areas has some merit. Middle- and upper-class whites had the means to flee urban areas and leave whoever could not afford to follow to pick up the pieces after the social upheaval of the 1950s and 1960s as well as during the economic woes of the 1970s. The white ethnic working-class watched as the government and the elite stepped in on some battles and completely ignored others.

On the surface, one can sympathize with the apparent abandonment of the white working-class by the government as well as middle-class whites. Under the surface, though, one should question why the working-class held on so strongly to racial differences rather than joining together to combat class differences. One of the underlying social threats that caused Southerners to implement Jim Crow policies was the potential of poor whites and African Americans joining together as a political and social force.

Overall, the white ethnic working class deserves its place in history. One cannot ignore the racist attitudes of the this group when studying twentieth century urban history, especially in light of the fact that many of them were the victims of racism themselves (Eastern Europeans and Italians specifically). However, it is time for historians to open the examination of these groups who have suffered much of the blame for urban racial crises.
Jozrone
At the conclusion of his monograph of why white working-class Baltimoreans abandoned the party of the New Deal, Kenneth Durr comments "We should neither vilify the lawmakers, philosophers, and clergy who helped bring about social change nor the white working people who had the furthest to go in adjusting to it." Fair enough one would think, but this is just a last disingenuous comment on a book that has been consistently evasive. For throughout his book Durr has continually damned liberals as intellectual elitists who ignore the wisdom of the (white) common people. Building on the work of such persons as Jonathan Rieder, Thomas Edsall and Jim Sleeper, Durr argues that problems developed in the fifties over white resistance to integration. Although angry working class whites used a racist vocabulary and were often admittedly racist, Durr argues that they had real concerns over blockbusting that elitist liberals didn't deal with. As the sixties and seventies wore on, working-class whites became increasingly and justifiably annoyed over liberal perfidy over school prayer, crime, the Vietnam War, student unrest and affirmative action. They had moved beyond racism, but elitist liberals were too cowardly to recognize their legitimate concerns. What's wrong with this picture? A comparison with Thomas Sugrue's Bancroft Prize winning "The Origins of the Urban Crisis" reveals no shortage of problems. For a start, although Durr lists nearly two pages of archival sources, his work relies less on what working-class whites said than what they are quoted in major newspapers. Similarly, all of his working-class white subjects tend to sound alike, tend to think alike and tend to sound like Durr. This is in striking contrast to Sugure. Added to this is the fact that Durr often refers to "Baltimoreans" and "blue collar Baltimoreans," when he is clearly referring to whites only. Most striking of all this is a story about racial conflict in which we only really hear one side of the story. Durr admits that there was often discrimination against blacks, but he does not go nearly into the extent or depth that Sugrue did. On questions such as education or housing Durr looks only at the sacrifices working-class whites have to make and pays no real attention to the gross injustices black Baltimoreans had to face.
This leads to the whole question of racism. It is all well and good to say that there was more to white protest than racism, but that is not the same as saying that white protest was just, reasonable or in good faith. Durr argues that whites were legitimately concerned about blockbusting and property values. But he concedes that they did not protest realtors or demand reform of the housing market. Instead they protested when black students entered schools or swimming pools or dancehalls. Durr quotes, and apparently agrees with, those Baltimoreans who thought that there was no moral difference between common criminals and people who used civil disobedience against segregated parks. Anti-war protestors break a few windows in Baltimore and Durr's subjects are appalled. Millions of people die in a pointless, unjust war, but their sensitivities don't matter. Of course Durr's story of urban decline does not include such factors as selfish urban machines or gross favoritism for the suburbs, which encouraged crime, poverty and a fiscal crisis that would be difficult for anyone to solve. It also does not include pollution, Republican campaigns against unions or redistribution of income to the very wealthiest. Johnson's Great Society programs and its many "middle-class" beneficiaries get only a grudging mention here. But let us suppose that Durr is right and that support for Wallace and Agnew did not reflect racist malevolence towards blacks. What then was the blue-collar white attitude towards African-Americans who, by the end of Durr's study, make up the majority of Baltimore? We don't know. Two to three centuries of malice just vanishes, and beyond that Durr fears to tread. What alternative did the community organizations offer to blockbusting, aside from trying to prevent blacks from moving? We don't know that either. Durr makes much of the unfairness of working class whites having to bear the brunt of integrating schools which suburban whites could escape from, but they hardly proposed county-wide integration or proposals to improve black schools. He speaks vaguely of some sort of "separate but equal" alliance between working class blacks and whites might have been possible had it not been, once again, elitist liberals, but he doesn't develop the point. Hardly surprising, really, since if whites do not wish blacks to live near them, work with them, sleep with them or go to the same schools, it is not likely that they will unite to the mutual benefit of both. Durr makes much of blue collar "realism" as opposed to the "abstractions" of liberal intellectuals, but he repeats their claims about welfare and dirty black quarters without any real analysis of whether that is true, or why. Durr prides his subjects for their sense of moral seriousness, yet this is a book where the most profound moral questions are evaded or the subject changed or other people blamed. As even Durr admits himself this is a working class political tradition that is often useless or ineffective or quietist when not directed about blacks. And starting with Jew-baiting against the CIO in the forties, Joe McCarthy's infamous doctored photograph against Senator Tydings, or enthusiasm for venial, shabby, dishonest people like George Wallace and Spiro Agnew, it is not a tradition known for its fine judge of character. The only way Durr can encourage our sympathy for this fundamentally demagogic practice is to adapt much of it himself.
Iaiastta
Why in the world is this work $29.99 in Kindle and in paperback 5 or 6 dollars??

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