Stories of Newark's postwar decline are easy to find. But in The Fixers, Julia Rabig supplements these tales of misery with the story of the many imaginative challenges to the city's decline mounted by Newark's residents and suburban neighbors. In these pages, we meet the black nationalists whose dynamic organizing elected African American candidates in unprecedented numbers. There are tenants who mounted a historic rent strike to transform public housing and renegade white Catholic priests who joined black laywomen to pioneer the construction of low-income housing and influence housing policy. These are just a few of the "fixers" we meet--people who devised ways to work with limited resources and pull together the threads of a patchwork welfare state. Rabig argues that fixers play dual roles. They support resistance, but also mediation; they fight for reform, but also more radical and far-reaching alternatives; they rally others to a collective cause, but sometimes they broker factions. Fixers reflect longer traditions of organizing while responding to the demands of their times. In so doing, they end up fixing (like a fixative) a new and enduring pattern of activist strategies, reforms, and institutional expectations--a pattern we continue to see today
Physical Description:1 online resource remote
Published:Chicago ;London :The University of Chicago Press,2016.
Publisher:Chicago ; London : The University of Chicago Press, 2016.
At the crossroads -- Fighting for jobs in the "laboratory of democracy" -- Restructure or rebel: Newark's war on poverty -- "Case city number one": urban renewal and the Newark uprising -- Fixers emerge -- The making of a fixer: black power, corporate power, and affirmative action -- Fixers for the 1970s: the Stella Wright rent strike and the transformation of public housing -- Institutionalizing the movements -- Black power, neighborhood power, and the growth of organizational fixers -- From redeeming the cities to building the new ark: black nationalism and community economic development -- The new community corporation: Catholic roots, suburban leverage, and pragmatism.