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Justice, Justice

School Politics and the Eclipse of Liberalism


Daniel H. Perlstein

In 1968, a bitter struggle broke out between white New York City teacher unionists and black community organizers over efforts to create community control of the city’s schools. The New York conflict reverberated across the United States, calling into question the possibility of creating equitable schools and cementing racial antagonism at the center of American politics. A path-breaking study of teacher organizing, civil rights movement activism, and urban education, Justice, Justice: School Politics and the Eclipse of Liberalism recounts how teachers’ and activists’ ideals shaped the school crisis and placed them at the epicenter of America’s racial conflict. Taking into account much of twentieth-century American history to uncover the roots of the school conflict, this book illuminates the dilemmas and hopes that continue to shape urban schools.

Acknowledgments – Worldviews in Collision – Race, Class, and the Triumph of Teacher Unionism – The Ambiguities of Identity: Whiteness, Ethnicity, and the Racial Politics of Schooling – Teachers for Community Control: The Limits of Anti-Racism – Up Against the Leviathan: Teaching for Democratic Community – The Case Against Community: Bayard Rustin and the Black Proletariat – Milton Galamison and the Integrationist Ideal – From Community Organizing to Community Control: Sonny Carson and the Redefinition of Black Community – Visible Men: Black Teachers and the Curricular Implications of Black Power – Schools and Social Justice in the Post-Liberal City – Notes – Index.