About the Series
History, as radical historians have long observed, cannot be severed from
authorial subjectivity; indeed, from politics. Political concerns animate the
questions we ask, the subjects on which we write. For more than thirty years,
the Radical History Review has led in nurturing and advancing politically en-
gaged historical research. Radical Perspectives seeks to further the journal’s
mission: any author wishing to be in the series makes a self- conscious deci-
sion to associate her or his work with a radical perspective. To be sure, many
of us are currently struggling with the issue of what it means to be a radical
historian in the early twenty- first century, and this series is intended to pro-
vide some signposts for what we would judge to be radical history. It will
offer innovative ways of telling stories from multiple perspectives; compara-
tive, transnational, and global histories that transcend conventional bound-
aries of region and nation; works that elaborate on the implications of the
postcolonial move to “provincialize Europe”; studies of the public in and of
the past, including those that consider the commodification of the past; his-
tories that explore the intersection of identities such as gender, race, class,
and sexuality with an eye to their political implications and complications.
Above all, this book series seeks to create an important intellectual space and
discursive community to explore the very issue of what constitutes radical
history. Within this context, some of the books published in the series may
privilege alternative and oppositional political cultures, but all will be con-
cerned with the way power is constituted, contested, used, and abused.
The city of Baltimore, with its unique geographic location and demo-
graphic profile, provides the singularly illuminating prism through which
A New Deal for All? Race and Class Struggles in Depression- Era Baltimore
views race and labor reform in the mid- twentieth- century United States.
Baltimore was at once the most northern of the country’s major Southern
cities and among the most southern of its leading industrial cities. As a seg-
regated Jim Crow city, Baltimore and its environs experienced the horrific
racial violence, including Klan lynchings, that riddled postwar border states;
as an industrial center, it attracted the large East European (and substantial
Jewish) immigrant and black migrant populations who came to the city for
jobs in its large and dynamic garment factories, steel plants, and service sec-
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