Reflecting back upon the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 1 point always stands out, a searing reminder of what was – and still is – America’s grossest injustice: /1
that in the one of the richest nations in the world, so many millions of people remain trapped in cyclical, soul-crushing poverty. /2
Dr. King, of course, regularly received death threats as he fought for political rights for African Americans. Police and law enforcement agents beat and jailed him repeatedly for his stances on social equity. /3
Okay since this has taken off here's a thread on the prevalence of alcoholism among poor whites in the antebellum South (based on my book #MasterlessMen):
Drinking to excess became such a problem in antebellum America that temperance societies began forming in the 1820s & 30s.
Leaders of this movement were quick to point out the connection between poverty & intemperance. Alcohol was central to the vast majority of southern fights & affrays, just as it was to prostitution & gambling.
More importantly: Alcohol was central to interactions bw races...
2. While I've always loathed the fact that D'Souza - someone with NO training as a historian - writes hot garbage marketed as history à la @BillOReilly - and markets this filth directly to racists, inflaming racial tensions & tacitly engendering & condoning racial violence -
3. Dinesh has now made a horrible situation much worse, feeding his aggrieved, existentially anxious, ill-educated in history/civics/govt, racist fan-base the tools to start discrediting academics & experts the same way Trump & his cronies have attempted to discredit journalists.
1. Thread on the relatively common practice of ignoring Black Historians within the public forum:
On December 28, 2018, @politico created somewhat of a scandal among historians when it announced that it had asked “16 top historians” to predict the future of America –
2. and out of all sixteen, only one scholar was a POC. But the Politico article was simply one of the (very) many examples of the near-erasure of scholars of color – particularly Black scholars – in mainstream media.
3. I’m not going to get into how detrimental it is to America to portray our history – and indeed, our future – as a white-centered history told by almost all white historians. And I’m not going to comment on why this is the perfect example of how, when diverse voices
All I can think:
"You can be true, you can be false
You'll be given the same reward
Socrates &Milhous Nixon
Both went the same way through the kitchen
Plato the Greek or Rin Tin Tin
Who's more famous to the billion millions?
News flash, 'Vacuum cleaner sucks up budgie'" - Clash
The most important part of the fight is knowing when to strike - and when to lower that fist and put your nose back to the grindstone (like imma go do now 🤓!)
1. Ugh, got pulled back in- cld write an entire longform essay on this but already have a lotta deadlines so here are a few tweets. Caveat: many other feminists, esp. feminists of color, have explained this type of self-care much better than I ever could.
Re: the meritocracy of academe:
A prof of *literature* gets @nytimes coverage for history using the same old sources to make the same old arguments, while scholars w groundbreaking research & methodology are overlooked bc they lack #IvyLeague pedigree...
@Ben_C_Chambers As John Hope Franklin showed, as early as 1834, Southern slaveholders - led by Fire-Eaters mostly out of #SouthCarolina - were eyeing Brazil (& indeed the entire Gulf & Caribbean - as places to expand their slavery empire.
@Ben_C_Chambers From Franklin's The Militant South (excerpts from my own Masterless Men:)
So I spent yesterday in a place I've written about but never really visited (which is always surreal): the Pearl River Swamp on the border of #Louisiana & #Mississippi.
During the Civil War this area (which is very close to the Free State of Jones that @vikki_bynum wrote about) was filled with anti-Confederate white men hiding out, trying to avoid having to fight the slaveholders' war.
I couldn't stop thinking about the WPA slave narratives about the area. The anti-Confederate whites learned how to hide from the enslaved, who learned from Native Americans.
Although the blues and boogie-woogie Black musicians from Mississippi & Louisiana who made it up the river to Chicago found a wealthy white audience, Black musicians who remained in Southern states didn't have that - & thus remain underappreciated or unknown.
#TuesdayThoughts: I wasn't able to be as productive as I wanted to be this year given an (often-ass-kicking) autoimmune disorder, but here's a thread of a few highlights.
As always, I remain so grateful to you all for your continued support.❤️
First, I am very proud of co-editing, with @m_hild, Reconsidering Southern Labor History: Race, Class, and Power. We had perceptive, brilliant scholars contributing essays on a wide variety of topics. Look for the paperback release in 2019!