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The Browning of the New South

Studies of immigration to the United States have traditionally focused on a few key states and urban centers, but recent shifts in nonwhite settlement mean that these studies no longer paint the whole picture. Many Latino newcomers are flocking to places like the Southeast, where typically few such immigrants have settled, resulting in rapidly redrawn communities. In this historic moment, Jennifer Jones brings forth an ethnographic look at changing racial identities in one Southern city: Winston-Salem, North Carolina. This city turns out to be a natural experiment in race relations, having quickly shifted in the past few decades from a neatly black and white community to a triracial one. Jones tells the story of contemporary Winston-Salem through the eyes of its new Latino residents, revealing untold narratives of inclusion, exclusion, and interracial alliances. The Browning of the New South reveals how one community’s racial realignments mirror and anticipate the future of national politics.

336 pages | 7 halftones, 1 table | 6 x 9 | © 2019

Black Studies

Latin American Studies

Political Science: Race and Politics

Sociology: Race, Ethnic, and Minority Relations


"Highly recommended. A substantial contribution to the growing body of "new migration studies" in the US. . . . The Browning of the New South offers a compelling analysis of the current reconfiguration of the racial landscape in the American South."


"The Browning of the New South is a well-needed contribution to various fields including immigration, race, and race relations. \ Jones adds to studies on the South particularly in Latino history that is decentering a field that has focused on previous\ immigrant destinations such as California and the Southwest in general. While Jones focuses on Winston-Salem and North Carolina, her theories and methods can be extrapolated to look at locations like Georgia and the New South."

Journal of African American History

"The Browning of the New South makes an interesting read for academic and non-academic audiences, especially those interested in understanding the changing socio-cultural and political dynamics due to fast-changing demographics in the US, and particularly in the US Southeast. By using Winston-Salem in North Carolina as a case study, the author does an excellent job of walking us through the stages of changing timeline of exclusion and inclusion that faces the test of changing policies of national and local governance and policy makers."

Southeastern Geographer

"Jones offers a dynamic, complex, compellingly argued account of the remarkably understudied black-Latino alliances, an account that will surely resonate far beyond Winston-Salem. At this political moment, she shines a bright light on the possibilities for powerful minority coalitions, which can be key for necessary social change. The Browning of the New South is insightful, timely, and inspiring. I cannot recommend it highly enough."

Cecilia Menjívar, University of California, Los Angeles

“This provocative book upends the conventional wisdom about relationships between Latinos and African-Americans. Jones shows in vivid detail how shared experiences of hostility from the white majority generate new forms of solidarity and organization. The Browning of the New South has important implications for the future of American politics and scholarly understandings of cross-ethnic coalitions.”

David FitzGerald | co-author of Culling the Masses: The Democratic Origins of Racist Immigration Policy in the Americas

"The Browning of the New South offers a compelling, dynamic, and fresh perspective on interminority relations in the newly triracial South. Indeed, the counter intuitive finding that anti-immigrant agendas generate robust multiracial coalitions has deep implications for the future of U.S. politics at both the local and national levels. By bridging the often partitioned literatures on immigration and race in U.S. sociology and drawing from scholarship on social movements, place, and politics, Jones shifts our under-standing of how race—and black-brown alliances—are made."

American Journal of Sociology

Table of Contents

1 Introduction: Race Relations and Demographic Change
2 Open Doors: Race and Immigration in the Twentieth Century
3 Closed Gates: The Rise of Local Enforcement
4 Racializing Mexicans: New Latinos
5 Making Minorities: The African American Embrace and Minority Linked Fate
6 The New South: New Minority Coalitions and White Retrenchment
7 Conclusion: Making Race: Conflict and Color Lines
Appendix A. Methodological Note: Race Work and Positionality
Appendix B. Interview Questions
Appendix C. Key Terms, Organizations, and Policies


ASA Racial and Ethnic Minorities Section: Oliver Cromwell Cox Book Award
Honorable Mention

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