tv Karlos Hill Beyond the Rope CSPAN August 14, 2018 12:41am-12:57am EDT
portions of this program contain images some viewers may find offensive. >> the history of lynching begins with the history of america. the term actually comes from an american revolutionary colonel and so during the revolutionary period he was famous for beating out a punishment on this but british tories. if you are suspected, the men under his church were targeted and so the term lynching comes from the american revolutionary
period. during this period, by and large individuals who would be victims of being punished for white. when we get to the 1880s and 1890s when we are talking about the victims, the intent was to expunge that person from the community and for that person's murder, collective murder to be an example for others in the community. so the intent was to kill and leslie phillips with others in the community what sort of state in line. they would stay under control. so, lynching begins as a form of social control in the 1780s and 1790s, but by the 1980s
and 1990s and into the early 20th century, lynching has become a form of racial, social control where the primary victims are african-american and the primary perpetrators are white american. so again, lynching has a long history in the country but in the modern period it is a racialist history. there was a lot of evidence i could draw upon to make this argument about the multifaceted experience. but i drew on newspapers and literature and oral history and the reason i draw on these particular sources is to understand how they made sense of the experience of terror.
we have to remember in the 19 tens and 20s and 30s it isn't on the horizon. african-americans do not know and do not understand that 20 years later there would be a mass movement that would upend segregation in the country. it seems from the perspective of 19 tens 1920s of segregation is going to last forever and so if this is the perceived reality in 1910, 1910, 1930, how do you make sense of the experience in a way that gives hope to the next generation to keep fighti
fighting. don't give up just because it looks bleak right now. so what i try to do in the book is to try to explain how artists, writers, how they try to make sense in a way that provides hope for the future and the next generation s so what i uncovered in the book is this tradition that i refer to as the consoling narratives. so i tol told a story how they n to conceive of lynching of stories of victimization but also stories of empowerment so what i call it is in the
background and the foreground is who those individuals were in life and how they resisted the mob violence and if you can focus on who they were in life and how they resisted, those elements of the story could be used to give hope, to inspire the next generation to mobilize against white supremacy and segregation. so the goal of consoling the narrative was to create a usable path as long as the story revolved around to collect bodies hanging from a tree. that is not an empowering story that you can share and inspire people, to empower people.
so the narrative of the lynchings were a way to move beyond the shadow of the lynching tree in a way that would inspire future action. so, in public the book i focuse story of henry lowry. in many ways he was a victim of lynching in arkansas in 1920 and he uses them to generate the entire movement they were getting off the ground bega andn the 1960s but by 1920 it is
fully enmeshed in the crusade, so the case was a case where a they poured resources into trying to depict him as a victim of white supremacy and a victim of white mob violence so they essentially create several news releases but emphasized him as a victim as someone who was civil rights were stripped and someone burned at the state. i don't want to get into the details of his lynching but it was one of the worst in american history, which was witnessed by at least from our estimates 10,000 people in the arkansas delta said it is a clear case of
black dehumanization. however, it was interesting to see how the press at the time sought to depict the case and several publications focused on the resistance beth lowery offered the mob. they focused on how he refused to whimper and begged for his life over to suggest his courage and bravery in the face of terror. so they chose the story of the black victimization because they made the calculation to secure their efforts and anti-lynching bill in congress so that's how they were victims of the lynch
mobs and the more support they anticipated they would receive in congress. the black press have different goals. they are not trying to convince congress to pass an anti-lynching law exclusive. they are also writing to a black public who wants to understand this case in a more nuanced way and in particular who the victim was in life. they want to understand what did he do in response to this anticipated lynching. so it goes into the details of the publications mainly the chicago defender who would base their depiction of the case. so just with that one case, there are two different
traditions of telling the story. there's a black victimization narrative and the naacp that believed they needed to tell to get support for the legislation and then you have the consoling narratives that focused on him as a person, who he was as a man, the life he lived in the community as well as the resistance but he offered in response to this threat of lynching survivor story is more resembling. so you have one case competing the narrative traditions but decidedly for the community telling the story was about giving hope to the community and future generations to racist white supremacy as long as the
story focused exclusively on terror and dehumanized black bodies, this is a story that would create a usable path for black people for black empowerment of. what i wanted to share is that the black experience of lynching changed over time, how african americans understood the lynching changed over time given the circumstances. at one momenthat one moment it'y important for the naacp to highlight people as victims and at another time it's important for black people to be highlighted as existing lynching in fighting back against the mobs because it has the intended rhetorical impact it would
my interest in the committee, my service in the agriculturaandagricultural commn my vendor's resistance to me. but finally their acceptance. and they did. i was known on the drafting committee only because i was a ranking member. i also made a contribution. also, they accepted me as equal and many accepted as a superior
and allowed me to know that i can negotiate with the best of them. >> in the weeks ahead we would hear from barbara, nancy johnson and. watch oral history sunday link back to booktv continues now with another stop from the c. stands for these two are. the next visit from tyler texas includes lou anne smoot talks about the struggles of hiding her homosexuality in texas for 60 years. it's the topic of her memoir out a courageous woman's journey. >> i start off talking about my parents, because they had such an influence on the direction that my wife took. they were southern baptists. so, i was brought up in the baptist faith tradition. they were leaders in thehu