In Black Freedom, White Resistance, and Red Menace, Yasuhiro Katagiri offers the first scholarly work to illuminate an important but largely unstudied aspect of U.S. civil rights history -- the collaborative and mutually beneficial relationship between professional anti-Communists in the North and segregationist politicians in the South.
In 1954, the Supreme Court outlawed racial segregation in public schools with the Brown v. Board of Education ruling. Soon after -- while the political demise of U.S. senator Joseph R. McCarthy unfolded -- northern anti-Communists looked to the South as a promising new territory in which they could expand their support base and continue their cause. Southern segregationists embraced the assistance, and the methods, of these Yankee collaborators, and utilized the "northern messiahs" in executing a massive resistance to the Supreme Court's desegregation decrees and the civil rights movement in general. Southern white leadership framed black southerners' crusades for social justice and human dignity as a foreign scheme directed by nefarious outside agitators, "race-mixers," and, worse, outright subversives and card-carrying Communists.
Based on years of extensive archival research, Black Freedom, White Resistance, and Red Menace explains how a southern version of McCarthyism became part of the opposition to the civil rights movement in the South, an analysis that leads us to a deeper understanding and appreciation for what the freedom movement -- and those who struggled for equality -- fought to overcome.