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    Policing of black resistance during World War II

    Aragon, Margarita (2023) Policing of black resistance during World War II. In: Aiello, T. (ed.) The Routledge History of Police Brutality in America. Abingdon, UK: Routledge, pp. 97-107. ISBN 9780367626105. (In Press)

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    Black struggle against police brutality in the United States, a deeply rooted and longstanding source of anger and protest, again became acute during World War II, as the democratic rhetoric of the war emphasized the outrage of apartheid at home. In this chapter, I examine three instances of wartime social unrest: the so-called Lee Street Riot in Alexandria, Louisiana in 1942 in which Black soldiers engaged in violent struggle against white military and civilian police; the riot in Detroit in June 1943, in which fights between white and Black youths on a June afternoon in 1943 unleashed a surge of white civilian and police violence; and disorder in Harlem six weeks later when the shooting of a Black soldier by a white policeman sparked an uprising against white police and property. Though distinct in the manner in which they unfolded, the policing of these moments of unrest reveal an underlying racialized order in which Black people’s claims to citizenship, indeed their very presence in the national polity, were treated as transgressions to be contained. Book synopsis: This handbook offers a comprehensive historical overview and analysis of police brutality in US history and the variety of ways it has manifested itself. Police brutality has been a defining controversy of the modern age, brought into focus most readily by the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis and the mass protests that occurred as a result in 2020. However, the problem of police brutality has been consistent throughout American history. This volume traces its history back to Antebellum slavery, through the Gilded Age, the Progressive Era, the two world wars and the twentieth century, to the present day. This handbook is designed to create a generally holistic picture of the phenomenon of police brutality in the United States in all of its major lived forms and confronts a wide range of topics including: Race Ethnicity Gender Police reactions to protest movements (particularly as they relate to the counterculture and opposition to the Vietnam War) Legal and legislative outgrowths against police brutality The representations of police brutality in popular culture forms like film and music The role of technology in publicizing such abuses, and the protest movements mounted against it The Routledge History of Police Brutality in America will provide a vital reference work for students and scholars of American history, African-American history, criminal justice, sociology, anthropology, and Africana studies.


    Item Type: Book Section
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): policing, resistance, racism, world war II, African Americans
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences
    Depositing User: Margarita Aragon
    Date Deposited: 09 Jan 2023 14:42
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:20


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