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Surrogate SuburbsBlack Upward Mobility and Neighborhood Change in Cleveland, 1900-1980$
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Todd M. Michney

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469631943

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469631943.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

Urban Change and Reform Agendas in Cleveland’s Black Middle-Class Neighborhoods, 1950–1980

Urban Change and Reform Agendas in Cleveland’s Black Middle-Class Neighborhoods, 1950–1980

Chapter:
(p.213) 6 Urban Change and Reform Agendas in Cleveland’s Black Middle-Class Neighborhoods, 1950–1980
Source:
Surrogate Suburbs
Author(s):

Todd M. Michney

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469631943.003.0007

This chapter looks at the ambitious reform agenda that black middle-class activist residents went on to mount in these outlying city neighbourhoods, encompassing housing upkeep, business revitalization, traffic safety, trash removal, and efforts to reduce liquor availability, juvenile delinquency, vice, and crime – all in an attempt to maintain what they considered an acceptable quality of life. Perhaps the most ambitious effort along these lines was a venture in which a group of African American investors purchased and renovated the Lee-Harvard Shopping Center, making it during its existence from 1972-1978 the “largest black-owned commercial complex in the nation.” Sometimes these reform efforts involved moralizing or exhibited an explicit class bias; upwardly mobile middle-class blacks did not always recognize that less well-off newcomers were motivated by similar concerns with liveability. In the end, however, their various attempts to take charge of their lives and communities contributed to the long-term vitality of these neighbourhoods and the city as a whole.

Keywords:   Reform, Neighbourhood activism, Housing, Business, Crime, Juvenile delinquency

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