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Black ballots - Steven F. Lawson

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Black ballots - voting rights in the South, 1944-1969
Steven F. Lawson
Paperback / softback
Lexington Books
UK Publication Date

Black Ballots is an in-depth look at suffrage expansion in the South from World War II through the Johnson administration. Steven Lawson focuses on the "Second Reconstruction"-the struggle of blacks to gain political power in the South through the ballot-which both whites and black perceived to be a key element in the civil rights process. Examining the struggle of civil rights groups to enfranchise Negroes, Lawson also analyzes the responses of federal and local officials to those efforts. He describes the various techniques-from the white primary, the poll tax, literacy tests, and restrictive registration procedures through sheer intimidation-that were developed by white southerners to perpetuate disfranchisement and the sundry methods used by blacks and their white allies to challenge them.

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Steven F. Lawson is Professor of History at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

With the publication of historian Steven Lawson's excellent study of the campaigns for voting rights in the South, we have welcome evidence that scholarship concerned with black activism and governmental policies in post-World War II America is alive and thriving.
Reviews in American History

Thoroughly researched and skillfully argued, this volume is an important contribution to the study of the civil rights revolution.
The Historian

As Lawson observes, only the foundations of change have been laid; the main struggle for reform lies ahead. This book demonstrates how it is possible to write excellent history which is also good political science.
Political Studies Review

Through his impressive research in a host of important but relatively unexploited sources Lawson has filled in details, examined the role of civil rights organizations and pressure groups, and clarified the process through which civil rights legislation made its way through Congress. . . . Readers are likely to find this book a valuable summary of a subject that has not been dealt with so thoroughly before.
Journal of Southern History

Keyword Index
African Americans - Suffrage - Southern States.
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