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Sundown Towns

Please find below a message regarding an important new book, SUNDOWN TOWNS: A HIDDEN DIMENSION OF AMERICAN RACISM by Dr. James Loewen, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Vermont:

Dr. James Loewen asked me to tell you about his groundbreaking new book, Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism, the first
comprehensive examination of the exclusion of African Americans from
thousands of towns across the country for much of the twentieth century.

Through violence, threats, and restrictive ordinances, communities of every size in every corner of the country drove and kept black residents outside their limits after sundown, beginning in the 1890s. Some towns remain "sundown" to this day, and Loewen proves that most all-white towns are not that way "naturally." In a starred review, Publishers Weekly says that Sundown Towns "is sure to become a landmark" and calls it "a compelling corrective to the 'textbook archetype of uninterrupted progress.'"

Sundown Towns shows that in Illinois (and New York and Virginia and Indiana and Maryland and...), a majority of all incorporated places had such exclusionary policies, formally or informally. Many "went sundown" between 1890 and 1940, prompted by little race riots, previously lost to history, that drove blacks from town after town. Some did so after and in response to Brown v. Bd., a fact previously unknown. The book also establishes the likelihood that some hundreds of these towns may still be "sundown" today, informally.

Dr. Loewen is currently touring the U.S. promoting the book and may be in your area! If you would like a review copy or more information, please be in touch. I look forward to hearing from you.

Please visit Powell's, Amazon, or your local bookstore to purchase your copy of Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism, by James W. Loewen.

About James W. Loewen:
James Loewen is the author of the bestselling Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong, winner of the American Book Award. He has dedicated his career to studying how Americans remember and misremember their past, and for twenty years he taught race relations at the University of Vermont.

Natanya Mitchell
Publicity Assistant
The New Press
38 Greene Street, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10013
(212) 629-4636
Fax (212) 629-8617

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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