Aspen Publishing

Race, Racism, and American Law, Sixth Edition

Derrick A. Bell


  • ISBN: 9780735575745

In stock.

  • Description

    Race, Racism, and American Law, Sixth Edition, compiled and published initially in 1973 by Derrick Bell, in this latest addition continues its position as an essential tool to any course addressing the reasons why race remains a key to America’s economic, political, and social functioning.

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  • Details
    Page Count 792
    Published 07/23/2008
  • Additional Product Details
    Chapter 1. American Racism and the Relevance of Law
    Chapter 2. Race and American History
    Chapter 3. The Quest for Effective Schools
    Chapter 4. Fair employment Laws and Their Limits
    Chapter 5. Discrimination in the Administration of Justice
    Chapter 6. Voting Rights and Democratic Domination.
    Chapter 7. Property Barriers and Fair Housing Laws
    Chapter 8. Interracial Intimate Relationships and Racial Identification
    Chapter 9. Public Facilities: Symbols of Subordination
    Chapter 10. The Parameters of Racial Protest
    Chapter 11. Racism and Other “Nonwhites”

    Table of Cases

  • Author Information

    Derrick Bell

    Derrick Bell's contributions as a civil rights advocate, intellectual instigator, scholar, and professor at Harvard University and New York University are immeasurable. His work and presence have been foundational to an entire field of law and legal scholarship, Critical Race Theory. He mentored generations of legal scholars, social justice advocates, and students, inspiring thousands to live out their commitments to fight racial injustice. He taught with his whole self by repeatedly demonstrating his willingness to contest the prevailing status quo. His passing in 2011 came before he could complete the seventh revision of his groundbreaking text, Race, Racism and American Law, first published in 1973. That text was the first of its kind and, like its author, was intellectually demanding, encyclopedic, and innovative. It was also a product of a restless spirit that did not settle for easy answers or self-reassuring platitudes. As a witness to and participant in a pivotal and historic period of the fight for racial justice, Professor Bell, perhaps more than many, understood both the possibility and limits of the law and relentlessly pursued the clear-eyed, unsentimental truth. He had seen that the trajectory of the struggle for racial justice was not a linear upward path but a jagged and sometimes nearly indiscernible road, with switchbacks, cutouts, cul-de-sacs, and only scattered lookouts of soaring vistas. Nevertheless, he insisted that we achieve a sense of direction by constantly testing and contesting ideas.

    Professor Bell's story and trajectory—from civil rights practice to theory—introduced a different way of approaching the study and teaching of law. Instead of centering the Supreme Court as the protagonist in the quest for civil and human rights, he centered the social movements that sought to enforce the promises and commitments codified in the country's fundamental law. He put it more eloquently than anyone else could: The movement for racial justice "was much more than the totality of the judicial decisions, the anti-discrimination laws and the changes in racial relationships reflected in those legal milestones…" His mission was to find "a method of expression adequate to the phenomenon of rights gained, then lost, then gained again." He helped us understand that the movement was not bound by time or existing doctrine. It was instead a commitment to carry the fight across generations, despite its repeated derailment.

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