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Negro and White Exclusion Towns and Other Observations in Oklahoma and Indian Territory by Frank G. Speck

Negro and White Exclusion Towns and Other Observations in Oklahoma and Indian Territory by Frank G. Speck

The book collects together and republishes a set of essays by Frank G. Speck that were originally issued as separate articles in The Southern Workman. The papers, which were written early in Speck's career, during the period 1907-1911, draw upon his first-hand observations in the Indian and Oklahoma Territories on the eve of Oklahoma statehood. In contrast to his more dispassionate ethnographic writings, which were published in venues read primarily by professional anthropologists and folklorists, these essays were published for a popular audience in the journal of the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute, an important college serving African American and Native American students. Reflecting the sensibilities of Speck and his anthropological circle at the time, these brief essays are accessible, provocative and sometimes biting in tone and represent the work of a young scholar seeking to develop a public, progressive, critical and engaged stance relative to the social problems faced by the peoples--particularly Native American and African American peoples--of Oklahoma and of the United States more broadly. For modern readers, the essays are little utilized sources for the study of Oklahoma, Freedmen, and Muscogee (Creek) Indian cultural history. They also deepen historical understandings of Speck and his work and enrich scholarly knowledge of early efforts at developing anthropology as a means of cultural critique. Under U.S. copyright law, these essays are now in the public domain and is being republished on this basis.

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