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Friday, May 2003:45 - 05:30 PM

Session 4

Capitalism and the Making and Unmaking of Black America

Part 1


Part 2

Highlighting the ubiquitous role of African American labor in creating the United States, participants will examine African American work lives throughout history, down to such recent phenomena as the impact of deindustrialization and increasing recent immigration of Africans and people of African descent from Latin America.


Steven Hahn photo

Steven Hahn

University of Pennsylvania


Eric Arnesen photo

Eric Arnesen

George Washington University

Adrienne Monteith Petty photo

Adrienne Monteith Petty

City College of New York

Shane White photo

Shane White

University of Sydney

William Julius Wilson photo

William Julius Wilson

Harvard University


Elizabeth Clark-Lewis photo

Elizabeth Clark-Lewis

Howard University

Nick Salvatore photo

Nick Salvatore

Cornell University

Session Time Slot(s)

05/20/2016 - 15:45-05/20/2016 - 17:30

Session Blog

“On The Defensive? Aren’t We?”: Historians Ensnared in Land, Labor, and Wealth Questions

Booker T. Washington’s 1915 death encouraged the African American businessmen in a small Virginia village to organize a meeting revisiting the ideals he had outlined in his famous address to the 1895 Cotton States and International Exposition in Atlanta, Georgia.[1] Accepting the reality of racial segregation, Washington had insisted that African Americans could be included in the progress of the South.

The Significance of the African American Relationship to Capitalism

Chair Steven Hahn (Univ. of Pennsylvania) opened session four, “Capitalism and the Unmaking and Unmaking of Black America” with the claim that the African American relationship to capitalism has been central to the system since its earliest stages of growth.

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