The Strange Career of African American Voting and Office-Holding

in The Two Reconstructions

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2004 | ISBN: 9780226845289
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226845272 | DOI:
The Strange Career of African American Voting and Office-Holding

Show Summary Details


A sudden, large increase in rates of black voting and office-holding has taken place twice over the course of America's political evolution. The meaning of that fact is disturbing. From a social science standpoint it is also deeply interesting. The first large expansion in African American voting rights took place after the Civil War. It was so sweeping that in 1874, when Congress revised the United States Code, the revisors were able to take forty-seven separate regulatory provisions from the federal elections statutes enacted between 1870 and 1872 and place them in the code. A “second reconstruction” was therefore required for America to become fully democratic. To appreciate the importance of party- and jurisprudence-building and the institutional foundations of these processes, one has to absorb the remarkable events and dynamics of America's two reconstructions.

Keywords: reconstructions; African Americans' rights; black voting; voting rights; federal elections; institutional foundations

Chapter.  9094 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.