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By Sharon A. Stanley

"Contemporary debate over the legacy of racial integration within the usa rests among positions which are more often than not visible as irreconcilable. On one part are those that argue that we needs to pursue racial integration since it is an integral part of racial justice. at the different are those that query the proper of integration and recommend that its pursuit might harm the very inhabitants it was once originally Read more...

summary: "Contemporary debate over the legacy of racial integration within the usa rests among positions which are ordinarily visible as irreconcilable. On one part are those that argue that we needs to pursue racial integration since it is a vital part of racial justice. at the different are those that query the proper of integration and recommend that its pursuit may perhaps harm the very inhabitants it used to be initially meant to free up. In An very unlikely Dream? Sharon A. Stanley exhibits that a lot of this obvious war of words stems from varied understandings of the very which means of integration. In reaction, she deals a brand new version of racial integration within the usa that takes heavily the troubles of longstanding skeptics, together with black strength activists and black nationalists. Stanley reformulates integration to de-emphasize spatial blending for its personal sake and calls as an alternative for an inner, psychic transformation at the a part of white american citizens and an intensive redistribution of strength. The target of her imaginative and prescient isn't just to combine black and white our bodies within the similar areas and associations, yet to dismantle white supremacy and create a real multiracial democracy. even as, besides the fact that, she argues that reaching this version of integration within the modern usa will be terribly tough, a result of toxic legacy of Jim Crow and the hidden, self-reinforcing nature of white privilege at the present time. Pursuing integration opposed to a heritage of chronic racial injustice could good exacerbate black soreness with none warrantly of accomplishing racial justice or a beneficial type of integration. so long as the way forward for integration is still doubtful, its pursuit can neither be prescribed as an ethical legal responsibility nor rejected as intrinsically indefensible. In An most unlikely Dream? Stanley dissects this vexing ethical and political situation"

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Extra resources for An impossible dream? : racial integration in the United States

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If segregation signifies only the presence of explicit statutes mandating racial separation on the books, then desegregation means nothing more than the elimination of these statutes and their immediate, transparently demonstrable effects. Such a model of desegregation would tolerate a virtually complete separation of the races, provided this separation was not explicitly legally compelled. A world of lily-​white suburbs and exclusively black inner cities could be considered desegregated. It strains credulity to accept a definition of desegregation in which the racial demographics of actual neighborhoods, schools, recreational facilities, and places of commerce could appear virtually unchanged from the days of Jim Crow.

For now, it suffices to note that white families who “choose” to move to the suburbs are often enabled by this history of state action, such that referring to these decisions as innocent is misleading at best and willfully obfuscatory at worst. Furthermore, black families surely do not really “choose” to reside in crumbling, impoverished, blighted inner-​city neighborhoods with struggling school systems, even if they do prefer living in predominantly black neighborhoods. Any worthwhile model of desegregation or integration must not screen history itself off from scrutiny.

49 By measuring integration exclusively in terms of the proximity of black students to white students, Justice Breyer underwrites such losses and sacrifices, even if unwittingly. But this is only part of the problem. For Justice Breyer’s relentless focus on numbers as a measure of integration also screens off internal classroom dynamics from scrutiny, and this is where his approach becomes blind to the continuing problem of subordination even in nominally desegregated institutions. Clearly, racism itself can endure in racially mixed spaces and institutions.

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