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Making a Way out of No Way : African American Women and the Second Great Migration

By: Boehm, Lisa Krissoff.
Material type: TextTextSeries: eBooks on Demand.Publisher: Jackson : University Press of Mississippi, 2009Description: 1 online resource (318 p.).ISBN: 9781604733501.Subject(s): African American women --Biography | African American women --History --20th century | African American women --Social conditions --20th century | African Americans --Migrations --History --20th century | Migration, Internal --United States --History --20th century | Oral history --United States | Rural-urban migration --United States --History --20th centuryGenre/Form: Electronic books.Additional physical formats: Print version:: Making a Way out of No Way : African American Women and the Second Great MigrationDDC classification: 305.48/896073 Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
CONTENTS; A NOTE ON STYLE; BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES; INTRODUCTION; CHAPTER ONE: Memories of the Southern Childhood; CHAPTER TWO: Guiding Influences and the Younger Years; CHAPTER THREE: The Move North; CHAPTER FOUR: Encountering the City; CHAPTER FIVE: The Work of a Domestic; CHAPTER SIX: Family Aspects; CHAPTER SEVEN: Experiences with Other Types of Employment; CHAPTER EIGHT: Reflections on the Migration and a Life of Work; ACKNOWLEDGMENTS; NOTES; BIBLIOGRAPHY; INDEX
Summary: The Second Great Migration, the movement of African Americans between the South and the North that began in the early 1940s and tapered off in the late 1960s, transformed America. This migration of approximately five million people helped improve the financial prospects of black Americans, who, in the next generation, moved increasingly into the middle class. Over seven years, Lisa Krissoff Boehm gathered oral histories with women migrants and their children, two groups largely overlooked in the story of this event. She also utilized existing oral histories with migrants and southerners in leading archives. In extended excerpts from the oral histories, and in thoughtful scholarly analysis of the voices, this book offers a unique window into African American women?s history. These rich oral histories reveal much that is surprising. Although the Jim Crow South presented persistent dangers, the women retained warm memories of southern childhoods. Notwithstanding the burgeoning war industry, most women found themselves left out of industrial work. The North offered its own institutionalized racism; the region was not the promised land. Additionally, these African American women juggled work and family long before such battles became a staple of mainstream discussion. In the face of challenges, the women who share their tales here crafted lives of great meaning from the limited options available, making a way out of no way.
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Item type Current location Call number URL Status Date due Barcode
Electronic Book UT Tyler Online
Online
E185.86.B6325 2009 (Browse shelf) http://uttyler.eblib.com/patron/FullRecord.aspx?p=515571 Available EBL515571

CONTENTS; A NOTE ON STYLE; BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES; INTRODUCTION; CHAPTER ONE: Memories of the Southern Childhood; CHAPTER TWO: Guiding Influences and the Younger Years; CHAPTER THREE: The Move North; CHAPTER FOUR: Encountering the City; CHAPTER FIVE: The Work of a Domestic; CHAPTER SIX: Family Aspects; CHAPTER SEVEN: Experiences with Other Types of Employment; CHAPTER EIGHT: Reflections on the Migration and a Life of Work; ACKNOWLEDGMENTS; NOTES; BIBLIOGRAPHY; INDEX

The Second Great Migration, the movement of African Americans between the South and the North that began in the early 1940s and tapered off in the late 1960s, transformed America. This migration of approximately five million people helped improve the financial prospects of black Americans, who, in the next generation, moved increasingly into the middle class. Over seven years, Lisa Krissoff Boehm gathered oral histories with women migrants and their children, two groups largely overlooked in the story of this event. She also utilized existing oral histories with migrants and southerners in leading archives. In extended excerpts from the oral histories, and in thoughtful scholarly analysis of the voices, this book offers a unique window into African American women?s history. These rich oral histories reveal much that is surprising. Although the Jim Crow South presented persistent dangers, the women retained warm memories of southern childhoods. Notwithstanding the burgeoning war industry, most women found themselves left out of industrial work. The North offered its own institutionalized racism; the region was not the promised land. Additionally, these African American women juggled work and family long before such battles became a staple of mainstream discussion. In the face of challenges, the women who share their tales here crafted lives of great meaning from the limited options available, making a way out of no way.

Description based upon print version of record.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Boehm (urban studies, Worcester State Univ.) has written a fascinating study of African American women who migrated from the South to the North from 1940 to 1970 and worked outside the home. Based largely on interviews conducted by the author and some of her students with 40 such women, Boehm paints a portrait marked by both variety and a certain commonality. The interviewees ranged from one who spent most of her life in the North in domestic service to one who now owns her father's business. Some migrated gladly, others reluctantly. Some rather easily found work, while others struggled. Most left the South in order to improve their lot economically and escape Southern racism. Many, nonetheless, retain fond memories of their life before they migrated and note that racism existed in the North as well. Most worked in domestic service at some point and, interestingly, felt great pride and fulfillment in doing that work. Verdict A very readable study, this is a valuable contribution to the field of African American history. Recommended especially for undergraduate and advanced readers.-A.O. Edmonds, Ball State Univ., Muncie, IN (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

CHOICE Review

Boehm's 40 oral history interviews with African American women who participated in the second great south-to-north migration of workers in the two decades after WW II add important material to the growing collections of historical evidence from previously ignored historical actors. Boehm (Worcester State College) also includes oral histories from other collections to document her thesis that "in struggling to establish themselves as agents of their own life direction, the women ... ultimately pieced together beautiful lives out of the sometimes tattered scraps supplied to them." In addition to presenting new material, the author discusses important issues about women's studies and oral history. Can one use the concepts of agency and choice when most of these women's choices were severely circumscribed? Boehm answers affirmatively, emphasizing women's resilience and persistence as positive aspects of their lives. Following Mary Catherine Bateson, she sees "desperate improvisation as significant achievement." Boehm also raises a continuing paradox for oral history practitioners: whether the oral historian's role should be to "honor the respondent's story" or to correct historical facts. Boehm chooses the former. An important addition to the literature about women and work and African American history. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries. S. S. Arpad emerita, California State University, Fresno

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