The Legacy of Jim Crow

What’s wrong?


Jim Crow’s Legacy, part of the True History series, connects the past with the present, giving readers a deeper understanding of racial oppression and inequality in America. Book editor and author Clarence A. Haynes draws on the work of historians and other thinkers — emphasizing as much as possible the work of black scholars — to provide an informative overview of the history of racist laws and ideas that have been Used to limit opportunity and limit the freedom of black Americans. Starting with the painful legacy of racial slavery in North America, Haynes shows how the complex developments of the Civil War, Reconstruction, and the era of segregation and discrimination known as Jim Crow laid the groundwork for unjust politics and discrimination across America. American life. Topics covered include the racial wealth gap, mass incarceration, police and vigilante violence, housing discrimination, and the damaging effects of stereotypical media representation of black people. Each chapter also includes definitions of key terms, examples of important historical events, and inspiring stories from artists, entertainers, and activists who contributed to the struggle for black freedom. An appendix contains an annotated guide to further reading and other resources for young readers to learn more about these deep and vital issues.


What’s good?


The book succeeds in a fascinating introduction to the concept of systemic racism and the painful history of racial oppression. Middle school readers may have heard about slavery and the history of Jim Crow at school, at home, and in other media, but they may not have faced the real connection between past and present injustice. Author Clarence A. Haynes nicely combines the story’s dark tragedy with more uplifting images of black creatives and civil rights activists, giving students a glimpse into how to face difficult issues without losing hope example.

The wide range of topics the authors attempt to cover has resulted in some details and nuances of complex policies and events being lost or confused, but Jim Crow’s legacy provides great further reading suggestions for interested students. Parents, students, and teachers shouldn’t expect a detailed historical account of the Jim Crow era, but they can expect a history of slavery and racial oppression that, as Haynes put it, “made America what it is today.”

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