By Shana Bernstein
In her first ebook, Shana Bernstein reinterprets U.S. civil rights activism via taking a look at its roots within the interracial efforts of Mexican, African, Jewish, and eastern americans in mid-century l. a.. increasing the body of ancient research past black/white and North/South, Bernstein unearths that significant household activism for racial equality persevered from the Nineteen Thirties during the Nineteen Fifties. She stresses how this coalition-building used to be facilitated via the chilly struggle weather, as activists sought defense and legitimacy during this conservative period. Emphasizing the numerous connections among ethno-racial groups and among the USA and international opinion, Bridges of Reform demonstrates the long term position western towns like l. a. performed in shaping American race kinfolk.
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Extra resources for Bridges of Reform: Interracial Civil Rights Activism in Twentieth-Century Los Angeles
The Communist Party also served as a training ground for collaborative minority racial equality activism. International developments fueled Los Angeles’s increasingly vocal minority communities, and these domestic and global catalysts sparked local minorities to mobilize to ﬁght discrimination, often through a burgeoning interracial collaboration. In other words, the Depression both heightened minorities’ awareness of racial discrimination and increased their possibilities for collaborative political mobilization, speciﬁcally through the New Deal, Communist Party, and labor unions.
FDR’s New Deal became an inherently multiracial arena that for the first time formally politicized various ethnic and racial groups and brought disparate minority groups together through a political party. Many minorities rested their hopes for new economic growth for California, and by extension for themselves, on the promise of the New Deal, especially as worsening discrimination heightened their fears about their future in Los Angeles. White Angelenos’ anxieties about job competition intensiﬁed discrimination toward minority populations.
55 Minority groups did not sit idly by in the face of growing hostility. In the ﬁrst decades of the twentieth century they formed various organizations to help themselves. To varying degrees, these early twentiethcentury institutions helped minority groups economically, worked to instill ethno-racial community pride, and to some degree fought discrimination. The ﬁrst civil rights organization per se in Los Angeles was the Forum, created in 1903 by the pastor of the First AME Church, the editor of the black newspaper The Liberator, and a local attorney.