UC Press Authors at the LA Times Book Festival

We’re excited to announce that three UC Press authors will be featured on panels at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books this weekend.

Marcus Anthony Hunter, co-author of Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life, will serve as moderator on the panel History: The Problem of Slavery’s Intransigent Legacy.”

“History: The Problem of Slavery’s Intransigent Legacy” (Conversation 2011)
Sunday April 22, 2018
10:30am – 11:30am
Hancock Foundation, Signing Area 1
Politics & History

Marcus Anthony Hunter is Chair of the Department of African American Studies, Associate Professor of Sociology, and he holds the Scott Waugh Endowed Chair in the Division of the Social Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the author of Black Citymakers: How the Philadelphia Negro Changed Urban America and the president of the Association of Black Sociologists.

Read more from Marcus and co-author Zandria Robinson on their thoughts on why Los Angeles is still part of The South and how Black lives are affected by current policies today.

Also on Sunday, The Rise of Extremism will feature Khaled Beydoun (American Islamophobia: Understanding the Roots and Rise of Fear) and Michael Kimmel (Healing from Hate: How Young Men Get Into—and Out of—Violent Extremism) in a discussion on extremist ideology and what attracts individuals to being radicalized.

 

“The Rise of Extremism” (Conversation 2072)
Sunday April 22, 2018
12:30pm – 1:30pm

Ronald Tutor Campus Center, Signing Area 3

Three authors will discuss the attraction and impact of extremist ideologies on the panel “The Rise of Extremism” (Sun. Apr. 22, 12:30 p.m.), moderated by The Times’ Matt Pearce.

Professor Khaled A. Beydoun, author of “American Islamophobia: Understanding the Roots and Rise of Fear” will be joined by sociologist Michael Kimmel, whose new book “Healing from Hate” looks at what causes young men to join — and also leave — American neo-Nazi and white nationalist groups. The third author on their panel is Norwegian journalist Åsne Seierstad, among those traveling farthest to attend the festival, whose riveting new book examines how two generations flee from and return to extremism: “Two Sisters: A Father, His Daughters, and Their Journey into the Syrian Jihad.”

Khaled A. Beydoun is Associate Professor of Law at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law and Senior Affiliated Faculty at the University of California–Berkeley Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project. A critical race theorist, he examines Islamophobia, the war on terror, and the salience of race and racism in American law. His scholarship has appeared in top law journals, including the California Law Review, Columbia Law Review, and Harvard Civil Rights–Civil Liberties Law Review. In addition, he is an active public intellectual and advocate whose commentary has been featured in the New York Times and Washington Post as well as on the BBC, Al Jazeera English, ESPN, and more. He is a native of Detroit and has been named the 2017 American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee Advocate of the Year and the Arab American Association of New York’s 2017 Community Champion of the Year.

Read more on Khaled’s thoughts on the deeply-ingrained history of Islamophobia in America on the UC Press Blog.

Michael Kimmel is one of the world’s leading experts on men and masculinities. He is the SUNY Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies at Stony Brook University and the author of Manhood in America, Angry White Men, The Politics of Manhood, The Gendered Society, and Guyland. With funding from the MacArthur Foundation, he founded the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities at Stony Brook in 2013.

Check out Michael’s #HealingFromHate series on the UC Press Blog.

 


Books on Racial Theory, Analysis, and Politics in Trump America at SSS

Going to Southern Sociological Society conference this week from April 4- 7 in New Orleans? Make sure to attend the author meets critics sessions to learn more about books that discuss racial theory and politics in today’s political climate. Purchase books at the conference.

Author Meets Critic Sessions

Thursday, 4/5 at 10:15am, Blaine Kern C Room
Miranda Waggoner, author of The Zero Trimester: Pre-Pregnancy Care and the Politics of Reproductive Risk

“Sociologists, historians, and women themselves owe Miranda R. Waggoner a debt of gratitude for this lucid, engaging ethnography that examines what it really means to imagine all women as mothers all the time.”—Elizabeth Mitchell Armstrong, Princeton University

The Zero Trimester breaks new ground in exposing deeply rooted assumptions about women as mothers in the new public health focus on pre-pregnancy. Essential reading for anyone interested in gender, medicine, and health policy.”—Rene Almeling, Yale University, and author of Sex Cells

“A compelling and important account of the deeply troubling consequences of the creation of the zero trimester. As Waggoner warns us, anticipatory motherhood is a brave new world that has, in part, already arrived.”—Kristin K. Barker, author of The Fibromyalgia Story

Friday, 4/6 at 1:15pm, Blain Kern C Room
Marcus Anthony Hunter and Zandria F. Robinson, authors of Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life

“A masterpiece! Chocolate Cities is a testament to the magic that is possible when you combine the funky wisdom of the Mothership with the best scholarship from the Ivory Tower.”—George Clinton, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame musician and founder of Parliament Funkadelic

Chocolate Cities is simply the most instructive and illuminating book on American geography and culture I have ever read.”—Kiese Laymon, author of Long Division

“A significant, timely, and extraordinary book that needs to be read and considered far beyond the academy.”—Elijah Anderson, Yale University, author of The Cosmopolitan Canopy

Chocolate Cities is bold on too many levels to name and kicks up enough funk to provoke a major paradigm shift in research on Black places.”—Mary Pattillo, author of Black on the Block

Saturday, 4/7 at 8:45am, Blaine Kern C Room
Jean Beaman, author of Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants in France

Citizen Outsider uncovers the French ‘racial project’ and contributes brilliantly to an ongoing conversation on racial formation in a formally color-blind society.”—Patrick Simon, Institut National d’Etudes Démographiques and coeditor of Fear, Anxiety, and National Identity

“A compelling account of the social structures and expressions of racism in France today—and their individual and community resistances.”—David Theo Goldberg, University of California Humanities Research Institute and author of Are We All Postracial Yet?

“Whites in France lie to themselves and the world by proclaiming that they do not have institutional racism in their nation. Bravo to Jean Beaman for clearly documenting how ‘racism without racists’ operates in the French context!” —Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, president of American Sociological Association and author of Racism without Racists

“Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the role of immigration in the widening social cleavages on both sides of the Atlantic.”—Richard Alba, coauthor of Strangers No More


*Discount cannot be applied to e-books or journals. Discount is taken from original list price. Standard shipping rates apply. This offer is not applicable to previous orders, nor can it be combined with any other promotional offers. Online ordering is currently available in the U.S. and Canada only. See more here: http://www.ucpress.edu/go/ordering.  


Achieving the Afrofuturist Vision of Chocolate Cities

“We didn’t get our forty acres and a mule, but we got you, C[hocolate] C[ity]!”— George Clinton on the title track of Parliament Funkadelic’s 1975 Chocolate City album

Black History Month provides an opportunity to reflect on the numerous events, social movements, and figures that have spurned societal change.

It also allows us to consider how far U.S. society has genuinely come in reflecting these values as well as what still needs to be done.

Over the past few decades, from Central District Seattle to Harlem to Holly Springs, Black people have built a dynamic network of cities and towns where Black culture is maintained, created, and defended. But imagine—what if current maps of Black life are wrong?

In Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life, authors Marcus Anthony Hunter and Zandria F. Robinson trace the Black American experience of race, place, and liberation, mapping it from Emancipation to now. In their Preface, they share why this journey is still required. Using the Parliament Funkadelic’s 1975 Chocolate City album as a jumping off point, they note:

Rather than wait for unfulfilled political promises, Black Americans were occupying urban and previously White space in massive numbers, their movement and increasing political power embodied on the track by multiple yet complementary melodies. Bass and piano take turns keeping the beat and beginning new melodies, saxophones speak, a synthesizer marks a new era, and a steady high hat ensures the funk stays in rhythm. The Parliament, its own kind of funky democratic government, chants “gainin’ on ya!” as Clinton announces the cities that Black Americans have turned or will soon turn into “CC’s”: Newark, Gary, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and New York. Parliament’s “Mothership Connection” public-service announcement is broadcast live from the capitol, in the capital of chocolate cities, Washington, DC, where “they still call it the White House, but that’s a temporary condition.”

Spurred on by postwar suburbanization, by 1975 the chocolate city and its concomitant “vanilla suburbs” were a familiar racialized organization of space and place. The triumphant takeover tenor of Chocolate City may seem paradoxical in retrospect, as Black people inherited neglected space, were systematically denied resources afforded to Whites, and were entering an era of mass incarceration. Still, for Parliament, like for many other Black Americans, chocolate cities were a form of reparations and were and had been an opportunity to make something out of nothing. For generations these chocolate cities—Black neighborhoods, places on the other side of the tracks, the bottoms—had been the primary locations of the freedom struggle, the sights and sounds of Black art and Black oppression, and the container for the combined ingredients of pain, play, pleasure, and protest that comprise the Black experience.

Four decades after Chocolate City, including eight years of the first African American president, what is the status of Clinton’s Afrofuturist vision of the chocolate city? Did Barack Obama turn the White House Black? Which cities became chocolate cities? How have the connections between cities expanded and shifted? And what does it mean when the CC capital is no longer, in fact, a CC? How have Black Americans mobilized space, place, geography, and movement to resist and repair the conditions in which they find themselves?

Inspired by a collection of Black intellectuals, adventurers, explorers, culture producers, and everyday folk, the goal of this book is to expand and extend the idea of the chocolate city, tracing it from its antebellum origins to the Black Lives Matter era. We use and pluralize the funk-inflected sociopolitical concept, henceforth chocolate cities, to disrupt and replace existing language often used to describe and analyze Black American life. Though always present in Black artistic and intellectual endeavors, the idea of chocolate cities and this book are uniquely linked to the story of how we came to meet, know, understand, and care for one another.

Read more from Marcus and Zandria on their thoughts on why Los Angeles is still part of The South and how Black lives are affected by current policies today. And see both Marcus and Zandria on March 24th at Crosstown Concourse at Chocolate Cities: A Symposium, co-presented by the Center for Southern Literary Arts and Africana Studies at Rhodes College.


LA is Still the South

By Marcus Anthony Hunter and Zandria F. Robinson, authors of Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life

A man is dragged from his seat. A group of police officers congregate around him as the recording continues. By the end of the ordeal the man, hospitalized and humiliated, becomes a siren song for resistance and uprising. A half-hearted apology is issued by those responsible. Sounds familiar? You may be thinking of the recent United Airlines ordeal. Yet twenty-five years ago, the scene was a traffic stop in Los Angeles. The man, not a doctor and not of Asian descent but instead is a black resident of Los Angeles named Rodney King.

The verdict “not guilty,” rang out across the Los Angeles’s Black belt like acid on old wounds. By 1992, black migration from the American South had over the 20th Century manifested into a entire Black region, South Central Los Angeles. Neighborhoods like Leimert Park and Baldwin Hills were built on a history of black artists and entertainers great enough to make millions but too black for Beverly Hills and Bel-Air. Separate water fountains and bathrooms had been replaced with separate communities and regions of the city. So when the brutal beating of Rodney King hit the television and airwaves, the graphic images and tale were an all too familiar reminder that black migrants hadn’t escape the chokehold of the Jim Crow South. The South followed them to California, refracted back in a video of a Black man savagely beaten by police officers. Never before had a recording so captured the experience. Never before had there been such clear indisputable evidence of the tendency for police officers to be forgetful of the humanity of black citizens. Even still, hearts would be crushed, tears shed and storefronts damaged after word of the verdict spread through South-Central.

From late April until early May ‘the Rodney King verdict’ reverberated across the city and nation in waves of protests, unrest and heavy police presence. Stores and buildings burned with the fury of a population that had escaped the South only physically. The commonly unheard voices of the city’s Black and Latino residents roared just beyond the gates and palm tree-lined campus of the University of Southern California.

More Than 25 Years Later

More than 25 years later many things have changed. On the site of the 1992 uprisings now sits a construction site accompanied by the noise and scaffolding of light rail construction. Built on the future of Los Angeles, the site—packed with steel and concrete, will create a vast transportation intersection between South Central and the rest of the city by 2020. As predominantly white runners clubs jog along the blocks that burned after the verdict, the spectacle of 25 years ago is merely a distant memory.

The name of the region of the city has changed too. No longer ‘South Central’, the area is called ‘South LA’ and ‘Mid-City’ now. Trolley cars shuttle back and forth between downtown and the Santa Monica promenade, as young white families and residents have discovered how convenient the area is. Where there was once an isolated set of black neighborhoods, there are gentrifying blocks. Many displaced black residents have gone back to the South to states like Texas and Louisiana and cities like Atlanta and Houston. Those who are poor, homeless and unemployed move about the city’s shrinking residential choices, as the cost of living continues to price them out.

More than 25 years later many things remain deeply consistent too. Tinsel town continues to draw Black people West in search of fame, fortune and freedom. Los Angeles still reflects the unrealized aspirations of the some of the oldest Americans, Black people. Indeed, UCLA’s recent reports confirm that diversity in Hollywood remains relatively non-existent. Hollywood, like the famous sign affixed to Laurel Canyon, is still white. Black actresses, like most all the black LA workforce, are forced to live out their dreams in a highly segmented and segregated labor industry. Although the median household income of black households in Los Angeles has historically outpaced the national average, black homeownership and black employment levels remain low and are declining.

Historically Black neighborhoods are contracting. New all white residential zones are forming. Police helicopters fly above. And shiny new trains traverse old gang boundaries. The city emerges from the ashes of the uprising, while long-standing Black residents fend for themselves. The makings of a classic movie about the South or country western, this, however is just a slice of black life in LaLa Land 25 years after the verdict. #BlackHistoryMonth #BHM


Marcus Anthony Hunter is Chair of the Department of African American Studies, Associate Professor of Sociology, and he holds the Scott Waugh Endowed Chair in the Division of the Social Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the author of Black Citymakers: How the Philadelphia Negro Changed Urban America and the president of the Association of Black Sociologists.

 

 

Zandria F. Robinson is Associate Professor in Rhodes College’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology. She is the author of This Ain’t Chicago: Race, Class, and Regional Identity in the Post-Soul South and coeditor of Repositioning Race: Prophetic Research in a Postracial Obama Age. See Zandria’s website New South Negress.


Extraordinary Histories

An opportunity to reflect on the numerous events and figures in American history, Black History Month is more than a month; it is an expansive and growing history of America. The recommended books below highlight poignant historical moments and social movements and exemplary leaders at the front of societal change. Just a sample of the breadth of titles we publish in African American history, and on ethnic studies, more broadly, these titles foster greater understanding of national and world history.


Black against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party
By Joshua Bloom and Waldo E. Martin Jr.

In Oakland, California, in 1966, community college students Bobby Seale and Huey Newton armed themselves, began patrolling the police, and promised to prevent police brutality. Unlike the Civil Rights Movement that called for full citizenship rights for blacks within the United States, the Black Panther Party rejected the legitimacy of the U.S. government and positioned itself as part of a global struggle against American imperialism. In the face of intense repression, the Party flourished, becoming the center of a revolutionary movement with offices in sixty-eight U.S. cities and powerful allies around the world. The notions of self-reliance and self-determination were at the core of the Panther’s beliefs, but the Party’s legacy has been largely misunderstood.

With Black Against Empire, historian Waldo E. Martin and sociologist Joshua Bloom provide the most comprehensive, unvarnished examination of the Party and its place in the larger scope of revolutionary and political tides swirling in the tumultuous 1960s. A book Bobby Seale called “profoundly important,” this bold, engrossing, and richly detailed history cuts through the mythology to reveal the political dynamics that drove the explosive growth of this revolutionary movement.

Selected as San Francisco’s 2017 One City One Book.

Houston Bound: Culture and Color in a Jim Crow City
By Tyina L. Steptoe

Beginning after World War I, the city of Houston was transformed from a black-and-white frontier town into one of the most ethnically and racially diverse urban areas in the United States. Tyina L. Steptoe’s award-winning Houston Bound draws on social and cultural history to show how, despite Anglo attempts to fix racial categories through Jim Crow laws, converging migrations—particularly those of Mexicans and Creoles—complicated ideas of blackness and whiteness and introduced different understandings about race. This migration history also examines these racial complexities through music and sound to trace the emergence of Houston’s blues and jazz scenes in the 1920s as well as the hybrid forms of these genres that arose when migrants forged shared social space and carved out new communities and politics.

Winner of the Urban History Association’s 2016 Kenneth Jackson Award, the Western History Association’s 2017 W. Turrentine-Jackson Award, and the Friends of the Texas Room’s 2017 Julia Ideson Award.

Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life
By Marcus Anthony Hunter and Zandria Robinson

When you think of a map of the United States, what do you see? Now think of the Seattle that begot Jimi Hendrix. The Dallas that shaped Erykah Badu. The Holly Springs, Mississippi, that compelled Ida B. Wells to activism against lynching. The Birmingham where Martin Luther King, Jr., penned his most famous missive. Now how do you see the United States?

Chocolate Cities offers a new cartography of the United States—a “Black Map” that more accurately reflects the lived experiences and the future of Black life in America. Drawing on cultural sources such as film, music, fiction, and plays, and on traditional resources like Census data, oral histories, ethnographies, and health and wealth data, the book offers a new perspective for analyzing, mapping, and understanding the ebbs and flows of the Black American experience—all in the cities, towns, neighborhoods, and communities that Black Americans have created and defended. Black maps are consequentially different from our current geographical understanding of race and place in America. And as the United States moves toward a majority minority society, Chocolate Cities provides a broad and necessary assessment of how racial and ethnic minorities make and change America’s social, economic, and political landscape.

Charles Burnett: A Cinema of Symbolic Knowledge
By James Naremore

Considered by the Chicago Tribune as “one of America’s very best filmmakers” and by The New York Times as “the nation’s least-known great filmmaker and most gifted black director,” Charles Burnett is a crucial figure in the history of American cinema and often regarded as the most influential member of the L.A. Rebellion group of African American filmmakers. The first book devoted to Burnett, James Naremore provides a close critical study of all Burnett’s major pictures for movies and television, including Killer of SheepTo Sleep with AngerThe Glass ShieldNightjohnThe WeddingNat Turner: A Troublesome Property, and Warming by the Devil’s Fire. Having accessed new information and rarely seen material, Naremore shows that Burnett’s career has developed against the odds and that his artistry, social criticism, humor, and commitment to what he calls “symbolic knowledge” have given his work enduring value for American culture.

Holy Hip Hop in the City of Angels
By Christina Zanfagna

In the 1990s, Los Angeles was home to numerous radical social and environmental eruptions. In the face of several major earthquakes and floods, riots and economic insecurity, policebrutality and mass incarceration, some young black Angelenos turned to holy hip hop—a movement merging Christianity and hip hop culture—to “save” themselves and the city. Converting street corners to open-air churches and gangsta rap beats into anthems of praise, holy hip hoppers used gospel rap to navigate complicated social and spiritual realities and to transform the Southland’s fractured terrains into musical Zions. Armed with beats, rhymes, and bibles, they journeyed through black Lutheran congregations, prison ministries, African churches, reggae dancehalls, hip hop clubs, Nation of Islam meetings, and Black Lives Matter marches. Zanfagna’s fascinating ethnography provides a contemporary and unique view of black LA, offering a much-needed perspective on how music and religion intertwine in people’s everyday experiences.

The Chosen Ones: Black Men and the Politics of Redemption
By Nikki Jones 

In The Chosen Ones, sociologist and feminist scholar Nikki Jones shares the compelling story of a group of Black men living in San Francisco’s historically Black neighborhood, the Fillmore. Against all odds, these men work to atone for past crimes by reaching out to other Black men, young and old, with the hope of guiding them toward a better life. Yet despite their genuine efforts, they struggle to find a new place in their old neighborhood. With a poignant yet hopeful voice, Jones illustrates how neighborhood politics, everyday interactions with the police, and conservative Black gender ideologies shape the men’s ability to make good and forgive themselves—and how the double-edged sword of community shapes the work of redemption.

Forthcoming June 2018; preorder today.

Making All Black Lives Matter: Reimagining Freedom in the 21st Century
By Barbara Ransby 

In the wake of the murder of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin in 2012 and the exoneration of his killer, three black women activists launched a hashtag and social-media platform, Black Lives Matter, which would become the rubric for a larger movement. To many, especially those in the media, Black Lives Matter appeared to burst onto the national political landscape out of thin air.

But as historian and esteemed activist Barbara Ransby shows in her highly-anticipated Making All Black Lives Matter, the movement has roots in prison abolition, anti-police violence, black youth movements, and radical mobilizations across the country dating back at least a decade. Ransby interviewed more than a dozen of the movements principal organizers and activists, and she provides a detailed review of its extensive coverage in mainstream and social media. A critical history of the present, Making All Black Lives Matter offers one of the first overviews of Black Lives Matter and explores the challenges and possible future for this growing and influential movement.

Forthcoming September 2018; preorder today.


#CharlottesvilleCurriculum, #CharlottesvilleSyllabus: UC Press Edition

Over the past few days, we received an influx of requests from faculty for books that provide context around the tragic events in Charlottesville. We’ve curated the list of titles below. Our hope is that this list serves as a resource for instructors preparing for fall courses, and that the books offer a foundation of understanding for students and readers.

Relevant Forthcoming Titles

Easily and quickly request exam and desk copies online by visiting any of the books’ pages above. If you need assistance in choosing the right texts for your course, we’d be glad to help, contact us here.

For other relevant resources, follow #CharlottesvilleCurriculum and #CharlottesvilleSyllabus, and read the Charlottesville Curriculum.