Joining the Government: ‘Because I Dared to Be Black’

Desmond King

in Separate and Unequal

Published in print March 1997 | ISBN: 9780198292494
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599682 | DOI:
 Joining the Government: ‘Because I Dared to Be Black’

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King analyses the difficulties facing Black Americans attempting to join the civil service and the inadequacy of the US Civil Service Commission's monitoring of both recruitment and promotion. He reviews the reform of the federal civil service from a patronage‐based to a merit‐based hiring system and then explains how the mechanism deployed by the civil service systematically discriminated against Black American applicants. In his examination, King focuses on specific hiring practices like the ‘rule of three’ as well as institutions including the Civil Service Commission, congressional committees, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

Keywords: Black American; civil service; Civil Service Commission; congressional committee; discrimination; hiring system; merit; NAACP; patronage; rule of three

Chapter.  14815 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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