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Representing the Race: The Creation of the Civil Rights Lawyer
Representing the Race tells the story of an enduring paradox of American race relations, through the prism of a collective biography of African American lawyers who worked in the era of segregation. Practicing the law and seeking justice for diverse clients, they confronted a tension between their racial identity as black men and women and their professional identity as la ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published April 2012 by Harvard University Press
(first published 2012)
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Mack is a real storyteller with this material. His cast of characters maintain a narrative that is full of insight into the concept of representation. The section on Pauli Murray was fascinating. I can easily imagine this book given treatment for a cable series- something akin to The Wire: the backdrop of Jim/Jane Crow, the South, the courtroom drama, the dismantling of color and gender barriers, the unrest within the NAACP in the late 50s/early 60s. I encourage someone with script-writing chops ...more
Mack tries to answer an impossibly hard question here, I interpret it as basically how much can a professional integrate into the vocational fraternity without losing ethnic authenticity in the eyes of the less privileged members of the group from which he sprung. Not sure if theres is an answer, but the wealth of this book comes from the reclaimed history of these not well enough known black lawyers.