Race and the Sociological Imagination

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For generations African Americans have been disadvantaged in America and effects of these injustices have made a lasting impression. Education is one of the leading problems in the black community. Though there have many reforms in education over the years, racial injustices still exist because no attention in placed on how legislature affects people of color. I was raised in a middle-class family of educators. My entire life I’ve been told to “stay in school, get an education, and work hard so that you can beat the system.” Recognizing the structural forces in my life has helped me understand my place in society. Being able to “understand everyday life, not through personal circumstances but through the broader historical forces that structure and direct it” (Desmond and Emirbayer 43) has really had an impact on me.

My father was born in 1968, the year we consider then end of the civil rights movement. He went to Luscher Elementary during the 70s and at that time the school was integrated. He had mostly White teachers and schoolmates. He received a quality education because of the resources given to whites were now available to blacks. He chose to attend St. Augustine High school. The Archdiocese of New Orleans constructed St. Augustine High School with funds solicited from Catholics of the Archdiocese through the Youth Progress Program. The Archdiocese of New Orleans placed the school under the patronage of St. Augustine of Hippo, a preeminent Christian and scholar of Africa, and a Father of the Church. This was appropriate since from its inception the school was designated for the education of young men from Black Catholic families of New Orleans. St. Augustine High School led the way in battling segregation in New Orleans. The successful legal challenges mounted by the school resulted in the de-segregation of the high school athletics in the state of Louisiana. The famed Marching 100 was the first African-American high school band to march in the Rex...
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