Historic Patterns of Soft Racism, Symbolic Violence, and Dignified Disdain for Blacks
Chapter 3 offers an exploration of the history of racism in Missouri and the covert ways that it was expressed. This history allows for an understanding of how racial attitudes that were framed long before the 1970s affected supporters and opponents of school desegregation policies. The chapter begins with a look at slave history in Missouri and then uses German immigration as a case study to show the inconsistency with which Missourians accepted different groups. Missourians navigated very delicate expressions of racism that produced the same results as the more overt forms. Missourians resisted equality by avoiding the trappings of using racist language and violence that made racism easy to discern. This chapter will establish how those covertly racist patterns developed and subsequent chapters will tie these historical patterns to contemporary behaviors that illuminate the racist nature of the school desegregation fight in St. Louis.
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