Chapter

Introduction

Kristina DuRocher

in Raising Racists

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780813130019
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813135571 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813130019.003.0001
Introduction

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This book examines the role that white southern children played in the racial brutality of the Jim Crow South. The mass mob lynching ritual not only served as a means to repress African American resistance but also to reinforce the white community's concept of racial and gender supremacy in the south. To ensure the continued survival of segregation and white supremacy, whites of all ages, especially those of the rising generation, had to participate in upholding a strict social order. For white southerners of this era, masculine identity revolved around the readiness to protect southern white women and white supremacy. Lynchings were justified as necessary to protect white women from the threat of black males who were depicted as having uncontrolled sexual desire for white women. Hence, white men sought to maintain their sexual prerogative over white women, and as part of this effort, white southerners taught their daughters to fear their own sexuality and conduct themselves as the passive, protective assets of white males.

Keywords: African Americans; Jim Crow South; racial violence; lynching rituals; segregation; white supremacy; male supremacy; social order

Chapter.  4263 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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