The Science of Integration

The Science of Integration

CHILDREN, RACE, AND POWER: KENNETH AND
MAMIE CLARK’S NORTHSIDE CENTER, by Gerald
Markowitz and David Rosner. University Press of
Virginia, 1996. 304 pp. $29.95.

A century ago this year, W.E.B. Du Bois took charge of a new series of annual conferences at Atlanta University on the state of Black America. Having just completed The Philadelphia Negro, a pioneering sociological survey of Philadelphia’s largely black seventh ward, Du Bois mapped out an ongoing program of scientific studies of various aspects of black life throughout the nation. His long-range plan was for the studies to be repeated in ten-year cycles for the next hundred years, expanding in scope each decade. “The Negro problem called for systematic investigation and intelligence,” Du Bois said at an Atlanta University convocation in 1938. “If I could have carried it out as completely as I conceived it, the American negro would have contributed to the development of social science in this century an unforgettable body of work.”

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