By Shelby Steele

ISBN-10: 0060931043

ISBN-13: 9780060931049

From the writer of the award-winning bestseller The content material of Our Character comes a brand new essay assortment that tells the untold tale in the back of the polarized racial politics in the US this present day. In A Dream Deferred Shelby Steele argues moment betrayal of black freedom within the United States--the first one being segregation--emerged from the civil rights period whilst the rustic used to be overtaken via a robust impulse to redeem itself from racial disgrace. in line with Steele,1960s liberalism had as its first and all-consuming target the expiation of the US guilt instead of the cautious improvement of precise equality among the races. This ''culture of preference'' betrayed America's top ideas to be able to provide whites and the USA associations an iconography of racial advantage they can use opposed to the stigma of racial disgrace. In 4 densely argued essays, Steele takes at the widely used questions of affirmative motion, multiculturalism, range, Afro-centrism, staff personal tastes, victimization--and what he deems to be the atavistic powers of race, ethnicity, and gender, the unique explanations of oppression. A Dream Deferred is a decent, brave examine the complicated challenge of race and democracy within the United States--and what we would do to unravel it.

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Additional info for A Dream Deferred: The Second Betrayal of Black Freedom in America

Example text

We have the money-for-nothing welfare mentality to thank for it. Isn’t it at least possible, if not likely, that welfare has diffused the normal human impulse to migrate from joblessness toward opportunity, the same impulse that once drove the Great Migration? When, as Wilson puts it, “work disappears,” the common human response is migration (or some other radical adaptation), not the inertia of today’s inner cities. Inertia is the common response to situations like welfare, where just enough basic needs are met to undercut motivation and risk taking.

Thus relativism became a virtue as a counterpoint to the disgrace of hard principles, and as a way of justifying “innovative” interventions like group preferences that blatantly stepped on principles. And so, here was this boomer generation in the seventies, eighties, and nineties relentlessly moving through one American institution after another, unfettered (in racial matters) by demanding principles, made special by historical blessings, given a free hand in social reform by the collapse of moral authority all around us.

And this is where the pursuit of moral authority ends in something both pernicious and paradoxical. ” Here they are seen as a different kind of humanity, as essentially unlike “mainstream” white humanity. And the essence of this “otherness” is their injuredness and helplessness. Because the interventions are justified by, and respond to, only these qualities, helplessness becomes the identity they are recognized for. It is the identity that makes them useful in the larger drama of white institutional redemption.

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A Dream Deferred: The Second Betrayal of Black Freedom in America by Shelby Steele


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