For decades the most frightening example of bigotry and hatred in America, the Ku Klux Klan has usually been seen as a rural and small-town product-an expression of the decline of the countryside in the face of rising urban society. Kenneth Jackson's important book revises conventional wisdom about the Klan. He shows that its roots in the 1920s can also be found in burgeoning cities among people who were frightened, dislocated, and uprooted by rapid changes in urban life. Many joined the Klan for sincere patriotic motives, unaware of the ugly prejudice that lay beneath the civic rhetoric. Mr. Jackson not only dissects the Klan's activities and membership, he also traces its impact on the public life of the twenties. In many places-from Atlanta to Dallas, from Buffalo to Portland, Oregon-the Klan agitated politics, held immense power, and won elective office. The Ku Klux Klan in the City is a continuing and timely reminder of the tensions and antagonisms beneath the surface of our national life. "Comprehensively researched, methodically organized, lucidly written...a book to be respected."-Journal of American History.
Kenneth T. Jackson is Jacques Barzun Professor of History and the Social Sciences at Columbia University and one of the nation's preeminent urban historians. His other books include Crabgrass Frontier and Silent Cries.
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