JAEH Archive / Vol. 39, No. 1, Fall 2019

Journal of American Ethnic History

Vol. 39, No. 1, Fall 2019

Table of Contents


Mendez v. Westminster: Domestic and International Forces Underlying the Fight for School Desegregation

By: Jennifer McCormick

This article examines how the desire for ideological and military dominance by the United States facilitated civil rights for Mexican Americans during World War II and the early years of the Cold War. The article relies on Mendez v. Westminster, the case that led to the end of legal segregation in California, as a lens to view the connection between domestic and foreign policy. Mendez came to trial when shifting geopolitical realities increased pressure on the United States to project an image of inclusive democracy, prompting an externally oriented elite to recognize the ideological gap between the country’s ideals and its practice. Although the case’s success provided activists and liberal members of the Truman administration with a measure of political authority to propel rights legislation forward, the rise of de facto segregation points to the limits of democratic activism when it confronts endemic racism without support from larger institutions.

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The Politics of Afro-Asian Intimacies in Jim Crow Tokyo

By: Sonia Gomez

This article examines the intimate encounters between Japanese women and African American servicemen in post–World War II Japan and the ways in which these intimacies challenged American racial politics that were reproduced in Occupied Japan, while at the same time reaffirmed American heterosexual masculine power and the subordination of Japanese women. It interrogates the gendered politics of the historical conception of Afro-Asian solidarity, and contributes to studies of the Black Pacific by considering these interracial intimacies as sites of potent marriage rights discursive production in the postwar years.

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“Now is the proper time for a foreigner to say a word”: The Rhetorical Agency of Hilda Satt Polacheck

By: Bridget K. O'Rourke and Zachary R. Bishop

This paper explores the rhetorical agency of Hilda Satt Polacheck, author of I Came a Stranger: The Story of a Hull-House Girl, the only known memoir of life at Hull-House written by an immigrant woman. Polacheck wrote the memoir during the 1950s and 1960s, and her daughter, Dena Epstein, edited the manuscript for posthumous publication in 1989. I Came a Stranger focused on the influence of Jane Addams on Polacheck’s early twentieth century experiences as a “Hull-House girl” and how she became an American at the social settlement. Although the memoir ends in 1935 with the death of Jane Addams, Polacheck’s writings and political activities after 1935 shed new light on the author’s reconstruction of her experiences at Hull-House. When Polacheck began writing the memoir in the 1950s, the FBI was investigating her and her adult children for alleged un-American activities. This article considers how Polacheck reconstructed her rhetorical agency and authority after Jane Addams’ death to promote a more expansive and tolerant Americanism during the politically repressive Cold War era.

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World War II Deportation in Alaska

By: John Radzilowski

The Heart of the Mission: Latino Art and Politics in San Francisco by Cary Cordova

By: Mauricio E. Ramirez

Deportation: The Origins of U.S. Policy by Torrie Hester

By: Julian Lim

City in a Garden: Environmental Transformations and Racial Justice in Twentieth-Century Austin, Texas by Andrew M. Busch

By: David E. Goldberg

The Lynching of Mexicans in the Texas Borderlands by Nicholas Villanueva, Jr.

By: Trinidad Gonzales

Jews of Harlem: The Rise, Decline, and Revival of a Jewish Community by Jeffrey S. Gurock

By: Meaghan Dwyer-Ryan

Famine Irish and the American Racial State by Peter D. O'Neill

By: Christopher Cusack

Indigenous Cities: Urban Indian Fiction and the Histories of Relocation by Laura M. Furlan

By: Kara Wilson

Flavor and Soul: Italian America at Its African American Edge by John Gennari

By: Fred Gardaphe

Who Belongs? Race, Resources, and Tribal Citizenship in the Native South by Mikaëla M. Adams

By: Katrina Jagodinsky

From a Multiethnic Empire to a Nation of Nations: Austro-Hungarian Migrants in the US, 1870–1940 by Annemarie Steidl, Wladimir Fischer-Nebmaier, James W. Oberly

By: Kristina E. Poznan

Refuge: Rethinking Refugee Policy in a Changing World by Alexander Betts, Paul Collier

By: Rebecca Hamlin