Cover: Roots of Violence in Black Philadelphia, 1860–1900 in PAPERBACK

Roots of Violence in Black Philadelphia, 1860–1900

Add to Cart

Product Details

PAPERBACK

$32.50 • £26.95 • €29.50

ISBN 9780674779785

Publication Date: 01/01/1989

Short

206 pages

World

In the late nineteenth century, life became more stable and orderly for most American city dwellers, but not for blacks. Roger Lane offers a historical explanation for the rising levels of black urban crime and family instability during this paradoxical era. Philadelphia serves as test case because of the richness of the data: Du Bois’s classic study, The Philadelphia Negro, newspapers, records of the criminal justice system and other local agencies, and the federal census. The author presents numerical details, along with many examples of the human stories—social and political—behind the statistics.

Lane reveals how social and economic discrimination created a black criminal subculture. This subculture, overlooked by those histories depending on often inaccurate census materials, eroded family patterns, encouraged violence, discouraged efforts at middle-class respectability, and intensified employment problems by adding white fear to the white prejudice that had helped to create it.

Modern crime rates and patterns are shown to be products of a historical culture that can be traced from its formative years to the 1980s. Lane not only charts Philadelphia’s story but also makes suggestions regarding national and international patterns.

Awards & Accolades

  • 1987 Bancroft Prize, Columbia University
Loeb Classical Library logo on red background

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution, by Lindsay Chervinsky, from Harvard University Press

Why You Should Participate in an (Online) Book Club

Online book clubs can be a rewarding way to connect with readers, Lindsay Chervinsky discovered, when she was invited to join one to discuss her book, The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution. Since my book was published in April 2020, I’ve discovered that my work appeals to three main audiences. First, the general readers who are enthusiastic about history, attend virtual events, and tend to support local historic sites. Second, readers who are curious about our government institutions and the current political climate and are looking for answers about its origins. And third, history, social studies, and government teachers