In Black and White
An Interpretation of the South

Lily Hardy Hammond
Edited by Elna C. Green

Recovering a neglected figure in the history of southern race relations


"Hammond was an exceedingly prolific writer, yet her career has gone largely unnoticed by historians. . . . To correct the general lack of recognition of Hammond's historical contributions, Green has fortunately produced a meticulously edited volume of this compelling book, as well as a substantive and engaging biographical sketch of this important woman."
Journal of Southern Religion

"Lily Hammond's In Black and White has been the starting point for historians working on race and gender in the South, but Hammond herself has remained a mystery . . . until now. Green recaptures the lost context of social welfare and interracial work that animated Hammond's book and gives us a sensitive account of her life. Finally, Hammond gets her due, and students can discover the complex world of women's interracial activism that the triumph of white supremacy in the early twentieth century erased."
—Glenda Gilmore, author of Defying Dixie: The Radical Roots of Civil Rights, 1919-1950

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“Our problem is not racial, but human and economic. . . . We hold the Negro racially responsible for conditions common to all races on his economic plane.” The writings of reformer Lily Hardy Hammond (1859-1925) are filled with such forthright criticisms of southern white attitudes toward African Americans—enough so that her stature as a southern progressive thinker would seem assured. Yet Hammond, who once stood at the intellectual center of the southern women’s social gospel movement and was in her time the South’s most prolific female writer on the “race question,” has been marginalized.

This volume reprints In Black and White, the most important of Hammond’s ten books, along with a sampling of the dozens of articles she published. Elna C. Green’s biographical introduction tells of Hammond’s marriage to a prominent Methodist minister and educator. It also traces Hammond’s career within the context of prevailing gender and racial attitudes in the Jim Crow South. Hammond, who had roots in Methodist home mission work, was also active in such secular and ecumenical organizations as the Southern Sociological Congress, the Commission on Interracial Cooperation, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Hammond worked alongside blacks to promote education, improve living conditions, and stop lynching. As a suffragist and temperance advocate, she urged the leaders of those largely white women’s movements to partner with African Americans.

Historians of religion, social science, and race relations will welcome the reintroduction of this remarkable but virtually forgotten figure.

Publications of the Southern Texts Society

Page count: 224 pp.
Trim size: 6 x 9


List price: $24.95

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Elna C. Green is Associate Dean of the College of Humanities and the Arts at San Jose State University. She is the author of This Business of Relief and the editor of Before the New Deal and The New Deal and Beyond (all Georgia).