"A complex and troubling essay on past and present American racism
. . . A model explication of strategy, conflict, and leadership on race issues."
"The authors of this work did an excellent job in resuming on its pages a serious discussion of the nature of American society and the character of the color line."
—Washington Book Review
In Confronting the Color Line, Alan Anderson and George Pickering examine the hopes and strategies, the frustrations and internal conflicts, the hard-won successes and bitter disappointments of the civil rights movement in Chicago. The scene of a protracted local struggle to force equality in education and open housing for blacks, the city also became the focus of national attention in the summer of 1966 as Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference challenged the entrenched political machine of Mayor Richard J. Daley. The failure of King's campaign--a failure he would not live to redeem--marked the final unsuccessful attempt to secure significant social change in Chicago, and soon afterward the national civil rights movement itself would unravel amid white backlash and cries of black power.
Picking up the threads of our own recent history, Confronting the Color Line examines a political movement that remains unfinished, a dilemma for America's system of democratic social change that remains unsolved.