“How New York City became the capital of the Jim Crow North”

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The essay “How New York City Is the Capital of the Jim Crow North,” written by Brian Purnell and Jeanne Theoharis and published in the Washington Post, debunks racial injustices and the series of events that led to racial segregation in the United States of America. The authors begin by offering a historical analysis of the emergence of white supremacy and white nationalism in America. From the arrest of Donald Trump’s father, protests of modern-day desegregation program in schools, cheering of George Wallace as a presidential candidate to the events that recently took place in Charlottesville, the authors argue that there is danger on the emphasis towards the South which obscures the repugnant and long history of racial injustices in North part of America.

Racism in the North hides behind the coded language, polite faces, unfathomable policies and the corruptible enforcements in the law. Racism in the North part remains to be destructive despite the polite image displayed. Purnell and Theoharis argue that racism was not only in the South but also in the Jim Crow North parts of America. The Jim Crow racism and segregation was much more robust in the North particularly in New York and deflected much of its problems towards the south. The New York City is guilty of the civil war for instance abolitionism. Additionally, Purnell and Theoharis add that New York also bred sentiments on white nationalism on immigrants and proslavery. The authors conclude by saying we ought to understand the racism history particularly in the North that appears to have a deeply seated muck on discrimination based on color. We should aim towards removing its effects and destructive practices to resolve racial differences.


Purnell, B. and Theoharis, J. (2017). How New York City became the capital of the Jim Crow North. Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/made-by-history/wp/2017/08/23/how-new-york-city-became-the-capital-of-the-jim-crow-north/?utm_term=.d21220c2d91f

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