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Friends DisappearThe Battle for Racial Equality in Evanston$
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Mary Barr

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226156323

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226156637.001.0001

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Together Again, One Last Time

Together Again, One Last Time

(p.255) Conclusion Together Again, One Last Time
Friends Disappear

Mary Barr

University of Chicago Press

While it is tempting to ask what socializing institution had the most impact on our lives, I conclude by reiterating their interconnectedness. School, neighborhood, and work shaped individual life courses. One sphere either opened-up or limited the next. During the civil rights era blacks and whites acted together to integrate. Despite inroads reforms barely affected educational opportunities, residential segregation or employment discrimination. Whatever gains were made seemed to disappear quickly as the economy worsened during the seventies. It was a period of stagflation, a combination of both rising prices and joblessness, due to deindustrialization and the loss of manufacturing jobs to overseas outlets. In all areas of social life blacks and whites remain mostly separate and disturbingly unequal. White youth in the photograph had advantages that black youth did not: a public school system with varying expectations for children almost exclusively determined by race, class, and gender; the stability and financial safety nets that come with owning a home as opposed to renting; and a dual economic system that relies heavily on educational credentials, cultural capital and social networks. Combined these structural forces set us on separate and unequal courses.

Keywords:   Evanston, Illinois

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