Download Black on the Block: The Politics of Race and Class in the by Mary Pattillo PDF

By Mary Pattillo

In Black at the Block, Mary Pattillo—a Newsweek Woman of the twenty first Century—uses the old upward thrust, alarming fall, and both dramatic renewal of Chicago’s North Kenwood–Oakland local to discover the politics of race and sophistication in modern city America.
           There used to be a time while North Kenwood–Oakland used to be affected by gangs, medications, violence, and the font of poverty from which they sprang. yet within the overdue Eighties, activists rose as much as take on the social difficulties that had plagued the realm for many years. Black at the Block tells the outstanding tale of the way those citizens laid the basis for a revitalized and self-consciously black local that keeps to flourish this day. yet theirs isn't a story of straightforward consensus and political cohesion, and the following Pattillo teases out the divergent classification pursuits that experience come to outline black groups like North Kenwood–Oakland. She explores the usually heated battles among haves and have-nots, property owners and residence dwellers, and rookies and old-timers as they conflict over the social implications of gentrification. alongside the way in which, Pattillo highlights the conflicted yet an important position that middle-class blacks play in reworking such districts as they negotiate among confirmed facilities of white monetary and political strength and the wishes in their much less lucky black neighbors. “A century from now, while today's sociologists and reporters are dirt and their books are too, those that are looking to comprehend what the hell occurred to Chicago should be discovering the reply during this one.”—Chicago Reader
“To see how variety creates unusual and occasionally awkward bedfellows . . . flip to Mary Pattillo's Black at the Block.”—Boston Globe

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Additional info for Black on the Block: The Politics of Race and Class in the City

Sample text

Her sister, who was sleeping in another room, caught a glimpse of the trespassers as they fled the apartment. Johnson was the mother of two small children and the wife of a Chicago fireman. Pictures of the children, with captions like “Orphaned by Crime” were run in the local newspapers, as were photographs of Johnson herself. The family had strong ties in the North Kenwood neighborhood. They were parishioners at Saint Ambrose Catholic Church at 47th and Ellis, and Johnson’s brother lived nearby, at 44th and Drexel.

Chapter 7 is about crime. Geographer Neil Smith argues that contemporary gentrification has taken on the character of the French “revanchist city” of the late nineteenth century. Revanche means revenge, and Smith contends that revenge characterizes contemporary gentrification efforts. Marginalized groups—distinguished by race, class, sexuality, or other characteristics—are blamed for the decadence and decline of the American city, resulting in a stream of regressive, if not punitive, policies. In NKO, this vigilance is manifest first in the attribution of crime to public housing, which justifies condemning and ultimately demolishing it, and second through the progressive criminalization of quality-of-life issues.

The forebears of black middlemen were the subject of Frazier’s reflections, but the group has grown in size and prominence since Frazier’s 17 18 Introduction time. These African American brokers have established themselves within networks of public and private power in Chicago and beyond. They exist within a system of coalition politics that fosters and requires both finesse and subterfuge in the back-and-forth translation of the demands of various interest groups. As the links between low-income African Americans and powerful white elites, black middlemen are the main characters of this book, and middleness is its dominating motif.

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