Examines the continuing ethnic diversification of black America and its impact on black political empowerment.
In The Caribbeanization of Black Politics, Sharon D. Wright Austin explores the impact of ethnic diversification of African American communities on the prospects for black political empowerment. Focusing on Boston, Chicago, Miami, and New York City—cities that for the last several years have experienced an influx of black immigrants—she surveyed more than two thousand African Americans, Cape Verdeans, Haitians, and West Indians. Although many studies conclude that African American group consciousness causes them to participate in politics at higher rates when socioeconomic status is controlled for, Wright Austin analyzes whether this is true for other black groups. She assesses the current political incorporation of these groups by looking at data on public officeholders and by examining political coalitions and conflicts among the groups, and she also discusses the possible future of black political development in these cities.
Sharon D. Wright Austin is Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the African American Studies Program at the University of Florida. She is the author of The Transformation of Plantation Politics: Black Politics, Concentrated Poverty, and Social Capital in the Mississippi Delta, also published by SUNY Press.
"The greatest contribution of this book is its analysis of black ethnics in a diverse geographic space. Moving beyond the New York City lens to Boston, Chicago, and Miami is something that has never been done in political science. This book is incredibly important." — Christina M. Greer, author of Black Ethnics: Race, Immigration, and the Pursuit of the American Dream