Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Uptown and the '60s: the Activism of JOIN
There's progressive... and then there's progressive. The rich history of the struggle for justice and housing in Uptown has a fascinating chapter rooted in a "new left" group known as JOIN (Jobs or Income Now). Areachicago.org carries a wonderful piece, "Uptown's Join Community," underscoring not only the group's effect on Uptown's Appalachian white and black communities, but also on the then-still-emerging feminist movement. Current Alderwoman of the 46th Ward, Helen Shiller, has her roots in much of this history. A famous sociologist and commentator on the 1960s left, Todd Gitlin, was with JOIN in Uptown and co-authored with Nanci Hollander the book Uptown: Poor Whites in Chicago.
Related link: Life's Lessons, Part 7 (This portion of a JPUSA history I wrote discusses our "education" politically speaking, and mentions JOIN in passing.)