Trouble in Mind: Black Southerners in the Age of Jim Crow
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Trouble in Mind: Black Southerners in the Age of Jim Crow

4.37 of 5 stars 4.37  ·  rating details  ·  137 ratings  ·  16 reviews
"The stain of Jim Crow runs deep in 20th-century America. . . . Its effects remain the nation's most pressing business. Trouble in Mind is an absolutely essential account of its dreadful history and calamitous legacy."--The Washington Post

"The most complete and moving account we have had of what the victims of the Jim Crow South suffered and somehow endured."
--C. Vann Wood...more
Paperback, 640 pages
Published July 27th 1999 by Vintage (first published 1998)
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The author of Been in the Storm So Long continues his study of Reconstruction and black/white relations in the South following the Civil War.

These two books, by Leon Litwack, professor of history at the University of California at Berkeley, are important and should be read by everyone interested in the history of race relations in this country. The period following the Civil War represents the nadir of black American history; a time when the white power structure in the South took back what they...more
A remarkable, though hefty (500 pages) look at life in Jim Crow America. Though there wasn't much I wasn't already aware of, what kept me reading every single page was Litwack's remarkable use of primary sources and the voices of the people who lived during that time. There were quotes and stories everywhere. It was engaging and heart breaking. Not for the faint of heart, but worth looking at--if only to give a stirring introduction to a period of history that isn't talked about enough. Big bumm...more
Between the end of Reconstruction and the signing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964, states south of the Mason-Dixon line enacted a series of Jim Crow laws designed to preserve the so-called supremacy of the white race. In this very readable chronicle of those shameful years, the author recounts the numerous ways in which whites suppressed the attempts of black citizens to realize their full social, educational, and financial potential. If a black sought a level of education higher than that of th...more
Those of us who have lived in the United States of America in the last 20 years know it as a land of rampant political correctness. It was not always the case; in fact, in order to know this country better, one needs to understand, what political correctness was a reaction against. After the military occupation of the Southern United States was lifted in the 1870s, for almost a century the region supported a regime of brutal apartheid, informally called Jim Crow. The blacks were disfranchised by...more
David Bates
Leon F. Litwack draws a dark portrait of the southern Black experience in the generation following Redemption in Trouble in Mind: Black Southerners in the Age of Jim Crow (1998). As in his 1979 work Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery, Litwack brings the reader through thematically organized sections and explores social situations and experiences through illustrative anecdotes. While the earlier work sought to capture the varied and radical experience of emancipation and reconstr...more
Connor Brown
Good, deep historical analysis of the Jim Crow south. A veritable mass of primary sources.
So important to read for understanding this horrible period. I would say this book along with The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson are great companion books for a fuller picture of the lives of African Americans who stayed, and those who escaped from the oppressive South after the official end of slavery. I am only half way through - I put it down to switch to lighter reading several times, because each chapter is a litany of horrors. If you aren't a huge fan of history, and if you can o...more
This text focused on a time in history that has been misrepresented for years. We don't realize how systematic and brutal black disenfranchisement was in the south and how much a role this discrimination had in the lives of real people. This is a well researched and interesting book with gripping and heart breaking first hand accounts of what the post reconstruction south was really like.
I feel fortunate to have studied extensively under Pulitzer Prize winning historian Professor Litwack while a student at UC Berkeley. He was by far my favorite professor, extremely personable and kind, and his insistence on primary sources remains with me to this day. From introductory freshman courses to writing my senior thesis under him, knowing him has been an education and an honor.
I read this book for a class. I LOVED it. Its a rough history of African American people right after the reconstruction period. Its one of those books you will fine that its so unbelievable that it must be true, even at times find yourself saddened that this is our history. But this book is definitly worth reading.
anique Halliday
A devastating book that chronicles America's race problem. A must-read for anyone trying to understand or come to terms with how this country has handled black folks throughout its time. I was just hysterical.
Aug 08, 2007 Jen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: history
This book gives a great history of African Americans living through Jim Crow. It's heart breaking and empowering at the same time and it certainly gives insight into the problems we continue to face today.
This is the story of the Jim Crow era as told by those who lived it. Litwack brings their stories together in a moving and unforgettable portrayal of this horrendous period in American history.
Sep 01, 2008 Lindsay rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everybody should read this book
Recommended to Lindsay by: Professor Coleman at the UofU
This book is an emotional journey during the Jim Crow period through out the South. At times disturbing yet very enlightening.
Matt Reese
Got depressed reading this. Not to say it isn't well written, it just didn't hold my interest. More academic than I had expected.
This should be required reading for every US citizen.
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