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Download PDF by George Lipsitz: A Life In The Struggle: Ivory Perry and the Culture of

By George Lipsitz

This booklet tells the tale of Ivory Perry, a black employee and neighborhood activist who, for greater than thirty years, has dispensed the leaflets, carried the wooden symptoms, and deliberate and took part within the confrontations that have been necessary to the good fortune of protest events. utilizing oral histories and vast archival study, George Lipsitz examines the tradition of competition in the course of the occasions of Perry’s lifetime of dedication and illumines the social and political alterations and conflicts that experience convulsed the USA in the past fifty years.

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Along with other black families whose incomes came from insurance, undertaking, and other businesses serving a primarily black clientele, they provided an economic basis for civil rights activity in Pine Bluff. Of course, the community was not monolithic and not every black business owner could or would support civil rights activity, but they did sefVe as a po. tential and sometimes an actual base of support. Even in the course of their everyday functions, black businesses sometimes provided vital services to the community.

E. B. Du Bois and about the black nationalist leader Marcus Garvey. 41 But like many others attracted by Garvey's message, he had to postpone thoughts of exodus to Africa while he grappled with the problems and concerns of his immediate surroundings. Ivory tried to learn about racism from every available source. When he worked in white people's houses, he surreptitiously read the books and magazines he found there in the hope that they would have answers to his questions about racism. He listened to the radio at home, and drew particular satisfaction from the triumphs of the black boxing champion Joe Louis.

Seeing no whites on board, he sat down on the seat directly behind the driver. The driver ordered Pierce to move back, but Pierce retorted that he was in full Copyrighted Material PINE BLUFF compliance with the sign, and that if the bus company wished to convey some other message by that sign, then they should change its wording. " With that principle in mind, Pierce quietly tested the limits of segregation whenever possible. He took a drink from the "whites only" water fountain in a downtown store, refused to move when a white man sat down beside him on the bus and then insisted Pierce should move farther back, and suggested to white store owners that hiring black employees would increase their sales to black customers.

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