cover of book

Back To Birmingham: Richard Arrington, Jr., and His Times
by Jimmie Lewis Franklin
University of Alabama Press, 1989
Cloth: 978-0-8173-0435-5 | Paper: 978-0-8173-5945-4 | eISBN: 978-0-8173-9240-6
Library of Congress Classification F334.B653A774 1989
Dewey Decimal Classification 976.17810630924

An engaging story of a man who demonstrated faith in his city, his region, and its people

During the 1960s, Birmingham, Alabama, became a major battleground in the struggle for human rights in the American South. As one of the most segregated cities in the United States, the city of Birmingham became known for its violence against blacks and the callous suppression of black civil rights.
In October of 1979, the city that had once used dogs and fire hoses to crush protest demonstrations elected a black mayor, Richard Arrington Jr. A man of quiet demeanor, Arrington was born in the small rural town of Livingston, Alabama, and moved to Birmingham as a child. Although he did not play a direct part in the civil rights movement in the 1960s, Arrington was destined to bring about some fundamental changes in a city that once defied racial progress.
Professor Franklin’s book is guided by the assumption that Americans everywhere can find satisfaction in understanding the dynamics of social and political change, and they can be buoyed by the individual triumph of a person who beat the odds. Ultimately, Back to Birmingham will, perhaps, enable the reader to measure the distance black southerners have traveled over the decades.

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