The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America
By: Richard Rothstein
Book 69/100 Pages: 368
An extensively researched chronicle of how America’s cities were racially divided through de facto segregation because of government policies and the actions of private institutions including banks and real estate agencies. Richard Rothstein retells the history, beginning in the 1920s, how government policies led to the creation of officially segregated public housing and the destruction of previously integrated neighborhoods.
The Color of Law does a good job of expanding our knowledge of history, showing post-WWII years how the great sub-urbanization was spurred on by federal subsidies for builders on the condition no homes be sold to African Americans. Although, The Fair Housing Act of 1968 prohibited future discrimination, many of these neighborhoods and community patters were already deeply rooted. It is an essential history of America’s state-sponsored history of race discrimination in housing.
This book is extensive with facts, detailing how both Republican and Democratic politicians imposed racial segregation, racial zoning, state-sponsored violence, and blockbusting. It’s an eye-opening historic retelling, along with descriptions of legislation that illustrate the devastating effects that de jure segregation has had on the Black community.