Eyes off the Prize: The United Nations and the African American Struggle for Human Rights, 1944-1955 (Hardback)
  • Eyes off the Prize: The United Nations and the African American Struggle for Human Rights, 1944-1955 (Hardback)
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Eyes off the Prize: The United Nations and the African American Struggle for Human Rights, 1944-1955 (Hardback)

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£72.00
Hardback 316 Pages / Published: 21/04/2003
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This book was first published in 2003. As World War II drew to a close and the world awakened to the horror wrought by white supremacists in Nazi Germany, African American leaders, led by the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), sensed the opportunity to launch an offensive against the conditions of segregation and inequality in America. The 'prize' they sought was not civil rights, but human rights. Only the human rights lexicon, shaped by the Holocaust and articulated by the United Nations, contained the language and the moral power to address not only the political and legal inequality but also the education, health care, housing, and employment needs that haunted the black community. But the onset of the Cold War and rising anti-communism allowed powerful Southerners to cast those rights as Soviet-inspired. Thus the Civil Rights Movement was launched with neither the language nor the mission it needed to truly achieve black equality.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521824316
Number of pages: 316
Weight: 540 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 22 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
'... a superb account ...'. Ethnic and Racial Studies
'... compelling ... Eyes off the Prize bravely punctures the reputations of some usually unimpeachable figures in the freedom pantheon. It also uncovers some less familiar examples of the brutality meted out against blacks in the postwar period ... Anderson's work deserves the widest possible audience.' Journal of American Studies
"Carol Anderson has written the most thoroughly researched and interpretively sophisticated monograph on Cold War civil rights. Eyes Off the Prize is destined to become a benchmark for the field." David Levering Lewis, Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer of W.E.B. DuBois
"An outstanding and timely study. Meticulously researched, boldly written, and persuasively argued, it clearly illustrates exactly where and precisely how the broadly based NAACP program of human rights got eviscerated during the 1940s and early 1950s, producing a narrowly focused and tantalizingly inadequate series of civil rights measures. Above all this book emphasizes the blatant ways in which the issue of race indelibly permeates all aspects of politics, society and economy in the United States." Franklin W. Knight, Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Professor, Johns Hopkins University
"Carol Anderson, has written an exciting political narrative history of African-American attempts to raise the issue of human rights before the United Nations in order to attack de jure and de facto segregation and racism in the US in the early post World War II period. Anderson's fascinating political narrative portrays the intense and complicated internal politics that characterized the NAACP, the pre-war National Negro Congress, and the post-war Civil Rights Congress...this is an very valuable work for students of African-American and general US history." Canadian Journal of History/Annales canadiennes d'histoire, Norman D. Markowitz, Rutgers University
"This narrative of the NAACP challenges conventional interpretations of how America's foremost civil rights organization negotiated the dangerous currents of the Cold War. Eyes Off the Prize is deeply researched and authoritatively written. Carol Anderson's vivid prose richly illuminates the history of the connection between civil rights and international affairs." Brenda Gayle Plummer, author of Rising Wind: Black Americans and U.S. Foreign Affairs, 1935-1960
"This is a terrific book that makes an important and distinctive contribution to the growing literature on race and U.S. foreign relations." Mary L. Dudziak, author of Cold War Civil Rights: Race and the Image of American Democracy
"Eyes Off the Prize is exhaustively researched, carefully crafted, skillfully and passionately argued, thought-provoking, insightful, and enormously valuable. It is extremely good in examining how the volatile mixture of personalities with mixed motives, domestic politics, and foreign affairs combined to influence the direction of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement in the context of the struggle for the larger prize of human rights. It is a remarkable and a powerful book." Paul Gordon Lauren, author of Power and Prejudice: The Politics and Diplomacy of Racial Discrimination
"...a rich historical narrative..." Journal of African American History
"A well-written and densely researched work...an important contribution." The Journal of Southern History
"...this is an impressive and valuable book." Political Science Quarterly
"Carol Anderson, has written an exciting political narrative history of African-American attempts to raise the isse of human rights before the United Nations in order to attack de jure and de facto segregation and racism in the US in the early post World War II period. Anderson's fascinating political narrative portrays the intense and complicated internal politics that characterized the NAACP, the pre-war National Negro Congress, and the post-war Civil Rights Congress...this is a very valuable work for students of African-American and general US history." Canadian Journal of History/Annales canadiennes d'histoire, Norman D. Markowitz, Rutgers University

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