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Beyond Boundaries: Envisioning Metropolitan School Desegregation in Boston, Detroit, and Philadelphia, 1963-1974

Savage, Michael (2020) Beyond Boundaries: Envisioning Metropolitan School Desegregation in Boston, Detroit, and Philadelphia, 1963-1974. Journal of Urban History, 46 (1). pp. 129-149. ISSN 0096-1442. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20200103-105626080

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Abstract

From the early 1960s onward, battles over school desegregation took on an increasingly metropolitan orientation, one all but destroyed by the Supreme Court’s 1974 decision in Milliken v. Bradley. In Boston, Detroit, and Philadelphia, segregationist urbanites, when faced with a legal challenge either created or made possible by black civil rights advocates, reversed course and trumpeted the advantages of metropolitan desegregation. These tactical metropolitanists recognized that a larger desegregation area reaching into the predominantly white suburbs would mean that white children would continue attending majority-white schools and they understood that stoking suburban opposition to desegregation could defeat integrationist legislation. Despite their segregationist motives, tactical metropolitanists offered a potentially productive solution capable of mitigating white flight, providing lasting integration, and aligning with the efforts of integrationist civil rights advocates in court. Uncovering tactical metropolitanism complicates our understandings of urban segregation and the sources of metropolitan reform. It suggests the need for a metropolitan history of civil rights that centers the importance of municipal boundaries in perpetuating inequality.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0096144218801595DOIArticle
Additional Information:© 2018 The Author(s). Article first published online: September 21, 2018; Issue published: January 1, 2020. The author declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article. The author received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
Subject Keywords: suburbs/suburban, busing, metropolitanism, Boston, Detroit, Philadelphia, race, school desegregation
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20200103-105626080
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20200103-105626080
Official Citation:Savage, M. (2020). Beyond Boundaries: Envisioning Metropolitan School Desegregation in Boston, Detroit, and Philadelphia, 1963-1974. Journal of Urban History, 46(1), 129–149. https://doi.org/10.1177/0096144218801595
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:100499
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:05 Jan 2020 00:11
Last Modified:05 Jan 2020 00:11

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