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Other titles in the Critical America series:
The Derrick Bell Reader (Critical America)by Richard Delgado
Synopses & Reviews
From his founding of The Journal of Social History to his groundbreaking work on the history of emotions, weight, and parenting, Peter N. Stearns has pushed the boundaries of social history to new levels, presenting new insights into how people have lived and thought through the ages. Having established the history of emotions as a major subfield of social history, Stearns and his collaborators are poised to do the same thing with the study of human behavior. This is their manifesto.
American Behavioral History deals with specific uses of historical data and analysis to illuminate American behavior patterns, ranging from car buying rituals to sexuality, and from funeral practices to contemporary grandparenting. The anthology illustrates the advantages and parameters of analyzing the ways in which people behave, and adds significantly to our social understanding while developing innovative methods for historical teaching and research.
At its core, the collection demonstrates how the study of the past can be directly used to understand current behaviors in the United States. Throughout, contributors discuss not only specific behavioral patterns but, importantly, how to consider and interpret them as vital historical sources.
Contributors include Gary Cross, Paula Fass, Linda Rosenzweig, Susan Matt, Steven M. Gelber, Peter N. Stearns, Suzanne Smith, Mark M. Smith, Kevin White.
Book News Annotation:
Derrick Bell (New York U. School of Law) is viewed by many as a pioneering force on issues of race and law in America. According to the editors of this reader of his writings, both law professors at the U. of Pittsburgh, his most seminal contributions have been pioneering critical race theory, narrative scholarship, and economic- determinist analysis of racial history. They present 58 pieces of Bell's as exemplary or illustrative of his life's works, grouping them according to the following themes: economic determinism and interest convergence; racial realism; the ethics of lawyering; revisionist history; sexuality and romance; politics and the academy; nationalism, separatism, and self-help; the price of racial remedies; pedagogy; racial standing; racism as meanness; popular democracy; race and class; and survival strategies. Also included are three scholarly critiques of some of the overarching aspects of Bell's work. Annotation ©2006 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Lawyer, activist, teacher, writer: for over 40 years, Derrick Bell has provoked his critics and challenged his readers with uncompromising candor and progressive views on race and class in America. A founder of Critical Race Theory and pioneer of the use of allegorical stories as tools of analysis, Bell's groundbreaking work shatters conventional legal orthodoxies and turns comfortable majoritarian myths inside out.
Edited and with an extensive introduction by leading critical race theorists Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic, The Derrick Bell Reader reflects the tremendous breadth of issues that Bell has grappled with over his phenomenal career, including affirmative action, black nationalism, legal education and ethics. Together, the selections offer the most complete collection of Derrick Bell's writing available today.
About the Author
Richard Delgado is University Professor at Seattle University Law School. Author of numerous articles and books on Latinos and civil rights, including The Rodrigo Chronicles, he is also one of the founders of critical race theory.
Jean Stefancic, research professor of law at Seattle University, is the author of many articles and books on civil rights, law reform, social change, including No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America's Social Agenda.
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