“The House I Live In”

in Places of Their Own

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2004 | ISBN: 9780226896410
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226896267 | DOI:
“The House I Live In”

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  • History of the Americas


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African Americans' attempts to attain and control suburban residences contributed to a continuing conversation about class in black communities. Since the nineteenth century, class was an important feature of African American social life, but within the racialized society of the United States, class stratification in black communities rested significantly on distinctions that African Americans drew “relative to other blacks.” Even as a larger cohort of African Americans attained economic positions comparable to middle-class whites in the postwar period, class remained a distinction that African Americans drew largely in reference to other blacks. Building on historic patterns of black residence outside the urban core, they used the threat that black migration and pioneering posed to the racial status quo to bargain for territory where African Americans could develop suburban neighborhoods of their own.

Keywords: African Americans; racialized society; cohort; blacks; racial status quo

Chapter.  7875 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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