African American women and power politics in New York City, 1944-1972

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Between 1944 and 1972, African American women from New York City ran for all levels of elected office, from City Council to the United States Presidency. In this article, I argue that World War II created unprecedented opportunities for women to enter politics. A study of postwar New York offers an excellent opportunity to examine how black women defied conventions of gender and race, challenging the pervasive image of the urban political operative, to advance in the city's tough electoral arena. They succeeded in overcoming the Democratic Party machine, Tammany Hall's, resistance to running black women. Once inside the system, despite significant obstacles, these women pushed to change the Democratic Party in important ways for women and for African Americans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-130
Number of pages30
JournalJournal of Women, Politics and Policy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 18 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science


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