Chapter Three is about Black towns’ fragile twenty-first century economies and the appeal of an economically insecure Black place as a site for remaking or rebuilding Black towns. It profiles the range of individuals and institutions that seek out Black towns for economic and housing development, business creation, or land and property acquisition. A mixture of ambitious residents who seek to improve the community profile and outside entities whose focus is profit or individual gain (sometimes at the expense and well-being of Black towners), is discussed. Also discussed is prison siting in some Black towns, the failure of prisons to provide employment opportunities, and the disconnect between prisons’ purpose and Black towns’ ethos and history of institutional commitment to local community.
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