March 31st, 2017

170331 todd michney surrogate suburbs

Todd Michney reached out to me (and through Have Coffee Will Write, Cleveland’s treasure Roldo Bartimole) about his book: Surrogate Suburbs:Black Upward Mobility and Neighborhood Change in Cleveland, 1900–1980 from the University of North Carolina Press.

Michney wrote:

Dear Jeff,

I came across your blog in looking up Roldo Bartimole’s contact information; I wanted him (and/or you) to know about my book which has just come out, Surrogate Suburbs: Black Upward Mobility and Neighborhood Change in Cleveland, 1900-1980 (University of North Carolina Press).

I tell the stories of striving African American families moving into outlying city neighborhoods like Glenville, Mount Pleasant, and Lee-Harvard in search of better opportunities and living conditions beginning around the turn of the century, and especially after World War II; these places served as “surrogate” suburbs until certain bona fide suburbs like East Cleveland, Shaker Heights, Warrensville Heights, etc. became more open to them. In the process, they confronted racism and a variety of other challenges in pursuing their goals.

I thought that Roldo with his deep knowledge of Cleveland politics might be interested in my book. If so, please let me know where I might have a copy sent — and whether you also have any interest in the topic (or if you would be willing to share contact info for anyone else potentially interested).

Thank you,

Todd M. Michney, Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor, School of History and Sociology
Georgia Institute of Technology

In October, Michney spoke about his book at Cleveland State University’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs. Here are Part I and Part II of that presentation. Michney also spoke at the Harvard Community Services Center: Part I and Part II.

Thomas Lodato interviewed Michney about his book for The Georgia Tech Center For Urban Innovation in December.

I’ve forwarded the message to Roldo and requested a copy of the book. I’ll let you know what I (and hopefully Roldo) think after I’ve finished reading. Richard Andrews of The Real Deal is also reading the book and I’ll add a link to his review when he makes his thoughts available.

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