The peculiar heritage of lynching in America
DOI link for The peculiar heritage of lynching in America
The peculiar heritage of lynching in America book
There is a peculiarity to the history of lynching in the United States. It is simultaneously reduced in scope, intentionally avoided, ever present, and mostly forgotten in the psyche of American citizenry. Those who know the history of lynching are rarely aware of its scope in volume, frequency, and ferocity. For Fouss, lynching rituals were conducted in a "performance complex" that resulted in a lynching cycle of performances with each stage executed to build excitement and to elicit the emotions that were required. A lynching was a form of reactionary terrorism "to maintain and fortify the status quo" of White people across social classes. The growing use of lynching effigies should be a reminder and cautionary tale of the desire for some to return to the practice. As part of an ongoing initiative to bring to light the history and memory of lynchings in America, the Equal Justice Initiative has assisted various towns and cities to erect historical markers.