A Decisive Decade by Professor Robert B McKersie
An Insider's View of the Chicago Civil Rights Movement during the 1960s

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Invaluable for scholars of the era, though many readers will yearn for more of the author’s warm, human voice.


The deeply personal story of a historic time in Chicago, Robert B. McKersie’s A Decisive Decade follows the unfolding action of the Civil Rights Movement as it played out in the Windy City. McKersie’s participation as a white activist for black rights offers a unique, firsthand viewpoint on the debates, boycotts, marches, and negotiations that would forever change the face of race relations in Chicago and the United States at large.

Described within are McKersie’s intimate observations on events as they developed during his participation in such historic occasions as the impassioned marches for open housing in Chicago; the campaign to end school segregation under Chicago Schools Superintendent Benjamin Willis; Operation Breadbasket’s push to develop economic opportunities for black citizens; and dialogs with corporations to provide more jobs for blacks in Chicago. In addition, McKersie provides up close and personal descriptions of the iconic Civil Rights leaders who spearheaded some of the most formative battles of Chicago’s Civil Rights movement, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Reverend Jesse Jackson, Timuel Black Jr. and W. Alvin Pitcher. The author illumines the tensions experienced by two major institutions in responding to the demands of the civil rights movement: the university and the church. Packed with historical detail and personal anecdotes of these history-making years, A Decisive Decade offers a never-before-seen perspective on one of our nation’s most tumultuous eras. 


About Professor Robert B McKersie

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Robert B. McKersie, the Society of Sloan Fellows Professor (emeritus) at the MIT Sloan School of Management, is the coauthor of A Behavioral Theory of Labor Negotiations and the award-winning The Transformation of American Industrial Relations.   
Published August 5, 2013 by Southern Illinois University Press. 286 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, War. Non-fiction
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Above average
on May 19 2013

Invaluable for scholars of the era, though many readers will yearn for more of the author’s warm, human voice.

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