"the best notes made the most votes": race, politics, and spectacle in the South, 1877-1932

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dc.contributor Rothman, Joshua D.
dc.contributor Rable, George C.
dc.contributor Green, Sharony Andrews
dc.contributor Brundage, W. Fitzhugh
dc.contributor Huebner, Andrew J.
dc.contributor.advisor Frederickson, Kari A.
dc.contributor.author Johnson, Mark A.
dc.date.accessioned 2017-04-26T14:25:20Z
dc.date.available 2017-04-26T14:25:20Z
dc.date.issued 2016
dc.identifier.other u0015_0000001_0002303
dc.identifier.other Johnson_alatus_0004D_12641
dc.identifier.uri http://ir.ua.edu/handle/123456789/3075
dc.description Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
dc.description.abstract From the end of Reconstruction in 1877 to the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932, black southerners influenced local, state, and national politics and challenged white supremacy by performing at political spectacles. Reformers, Lost Cause advocates, and party leaders employed spectacle to generate enthusiasm, demonstrate the strength of the party, mobilize voters, legitimize electoral results, and spread their platforms. Before disfranchisement, African Americans played prominent roles in these spectacles as performers, orators, musicians, marchers, and torchbearers. Despite attempts to eliminate spectacles and restrict voting, southerners continued to view spectacle as an important part of the political process. In the twentieth century, African Americans participated in spectacles despite disfranchisement, diminished economic opportunity, and the threat of lynching. With their presence and activism, they remained a visible and audible part of the public sphere, which resulted in financial improvement and political influence. At times, they exhibited dangerous behavior at political spectacles by harassing white politicians and confronting white women. Based on findings in newspapers and archives, this dissertation examines three case studies from Georgia, Louisiana, and Tennessee. From 1885 to 1898, black Atlanta and black Maconites played prominent roles in the local-option prohibition campaigns of the region despite increasingly hostile attitudes toward African Americans. In 1903, black musicians in New Orleans allied with their white colleagues to protest the exclusion of black talent from a reunion of Confederate veterans. In 1909, black bandleader W. C. Handy lent his talents to the mayoral campaign of Edward Hull Crump. During the campaign, Handy composed a song that launched both of their careers. In addition to these case studies, this dissertation consists of three broader chapters, which reveal black southerners performed similar behavior across the South. From 1877 to 1932, African Americans spoke at public rallies, generated enthusiasm with music, linked party politics to the memory of the Civil War, honored favorable candidates, and openly humiliated their opposition.
dc.format.extent 314 p.
dc.format.medium electronic
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language English
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.publisher University of Alabama Libraries
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Electronic Theses and Dissertations
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Libraries Digital Collections
dc.relation.hasversion born digital
dc.rights All rights reserved by the author unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subject.other History
dc.title "the best notes made the most votes": race, politics, and spectacle in the South, 1877-1932
dc.type thesis
dc.type text
etdms.degree.department University of Alabama. Dept. of History
etdms.degree.discipline History
etdms.degree.grantor The University of Alabama
etdms.degree.level doctoral
etdms.degree.name Ph.D.

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