BLACK POLITICAL POWER IN AMERICA by Chuck Stone

BLACK POLITICAL POWER IN AMERICA

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Age Range: 1359 - 1967
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Stone interprets political power, not in terms of policy-making and economic influence, but in classic American terms of pluralism, patronage and brokerage. Within this frame of reference he has constructed a unique ""non-history"" of black political power. The interpretation of black citizens failures to deal themselves into the game begins with the discrepancy between black leaders and black politicians; notes the slight effect of ""revolving- door Negroes"" appointed to high office: and characterizes types from Brooke to Chicago Congressman Dawson. Black militants of the Sixties have infuriated whites by ""spoiling the myth of the melling pot."" That it is a myth Stone demonstrates with a fine analysis of ethnic political power, emphasizing big-city government, examining the Irish-Italian structure of relations between crime and politics. Jews as bloc-voters, Polish homeowners' endogamy, and so forth, to ""black power,"" translated as pressure-group politics in the American tradition. Stone (ex-editor of the Chicago Defender and quondam associate of Powell) contends that ""loyalty to the fact of their race"" is the primary need of black people. His account of Stokes Cleveland victory fails to deal with the squalid political realities he exposes so well elsewhere; and he neglects SNCC, and the New York-California Black Panthers, who don't fit his pattern. But it's an attractive, readable, exceedingly informative study for readers of his Tell It Like It Is (p. 1359-1967) and then some.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1968
Publisher: Bobbs-Merrill