Slavery by Another Name

THU, APR 10, 2008 (1:13:35)

Douglas Blackmon’s Slavery by Another Name illuminates a little known, widespread and legal form of slavery that continued in the US from the end of the Civil War through 1945. One example: As a result of abhorrent legislation designed to intimidate African-Americans, thousands of blacks were arbitrarily arrested, levied with tremendous fines, and charged for the costs of their own arrests. Based on a vast record of original documents and personal narratives, Slavery by Another Name reveals the lost stories of African-Americans who, despite Amendment 13 and the Emancipation Proclamation, lived a life of toil and slavery into the 20th Century. Blackmon is the Atlanta Bureau Chief of the Wall Street Journal. He has written extensively on race, the economy, and American society. Reared in the Mississippi Delta, he lives in downtown Atlanta with his wife and children.

+ BIO: Douglas Blackmon

Over the past 20 years, Douglas A. Blackmon has written extensively about the American quandary of race, exploring the integration of schools during his childhood in a Mississippi Delta farm town, lost episodes of the Civil Rights movement, and, repeatedly, the dilemma of how a contemporary society should grapple with a troubled past. Many of his stories in The Wall Street Journal have explored the interplay of wealth, corporate conduct and racial segregation. In 2000, the National Association of Black Journalists recognized Blackmons stories revealing the secret role of J.P. Morgan & Co. during the 1960s in funneling funds between a wealthy northern white supremacist and segregationists fighting the Civil Rights Movement in the South. A year later, he revealed in the Journal how U.S. Steel Corp. relied on forced black laborers in Alabama coal mines in the early 20th century, an article which led to his first book, Slavery By Another Name, which broadly examines how a form of neoslavery thrived in the U.S. long after legal abolition. Blackmon joined the Journal in October 1995 as a reporter in Atlanta. Prior to joining the Journal, Blackmon was a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where he covered race and politics, and special assignments including the fall of the Berlin Wall and the civil war in the former Yugoslavia. Previously, he was a reporter for the Arkansas Democrat, managing editor of the Daily Record in Little Rock, Ark, and a writer for weekly newspapers. Blackmon penned his first newspaper story at the age of 12, for the Progress, in his hometown of Leland, Mississippi. He graduated from Hendrix College in Conway, Ark., and lives in Atlanta with his wife and two children.

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