Elizabeth Hinton is the author of From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime (2016). After earning her Ph.D. in United States History at Columbia University, Hinton joined the Department of History and the Department of African and African American Studies at Harvard University. Now a professor at Yale University, her second book, America on Fire (Liveright, May 18) is a meticulous study of the many rebellions and protests that have taken place in response to police violence in cities across the U.S. since the 1960s.
In this interview, Hinton discusses the archival research and oral interviews she conducted for this book and touches on how research for her first book led to the germination of her ideas forAmerica on Fire. The crucial takeaway for readers, Hinton argues, is the necessity to reconstruct the response to economic inequalities–– “a major structural intervention” for public schools, job creation, housing, and other sectors of American life, rather than a reinvestment in the prison and security industries.
From the Kirkus-starred review: “[Hinton] recounts the history of lynch mobs across the country, reacting to Black advances in economic well-being and civil rights through armed violence.…The cycle of public rebellions begins, as the author sharply describes it, with the police interfering with some ordinary activity.…A must-read for all concerned with civil rights and social justice in modern America.”