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In C Vann Woodwards enormously influential examination of Jim Crow segregation laws in the post-Civil War South he makes two fundamental points first that the imposition of strict segregation did not immediately follow the War second that the eventual adoption of Jim Crow laws was not simply a function of racism--there were myriad political factors involvedWoodward first provides a detailed analysis of the state of the races following the War He demonstrates that Slavery had required the proximity and interaction of Blacks and Whites which could not be reversed overnight that Northern Republicans Southern Conservatives and Southern Radicals all had reasons to court black citizens and reminds us that with the North virtually running the South for a period of years segregation would not have been allowed immediately after the war He then makes a compelling case that the true rise of Jim Crow came about in the 1890s due to a confluence of factors 1 Northern withdrawal from Southern affairs 2 the changes in Northern attitudes towards colored peoples as America became an Imperialist power 3 the crushing depression of the 80s which added fuel to racial animus 4 the concurrent rise of the Populists who were more than willing to play the race card and 5 the series of Supreme Court rulings which sanctioned separation Finally he turns to the demise of segregation which was going on even as he wrote the several editions of his book Here again he identifies a number of factors besides the Civil Rights movement which contributed to Jim Crows fall Northern migration changing but this time improving attitudes towards colored peoples as exemplified at the UN the reversal of course by the Supreme Court and the improved economic condition of the Nation generally In chronicling this rise and fall of Jim Crow demonstrating that segregation was a gradual rather than an immediate natural response to the end of slavery and showing that many factors besides race
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