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The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How it Changed America.

The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How It Changed America by Nicholas Lemann; Knopf, New York, $24.95

When you find The Promised Land's author so early on writing nonsense like "During the first half of the twentieth century, it was at least possible to think of race as a Southern issue," you may be tempted to drop the book. Don't.

The story of the causes and effects of black northward migration since the 1940s is too important; and the way Lemann tells it, downright intriguing. He sets it against the backdrop of Northern and Southern political and economic wheeling and dealing and enlivens the migration through the stories of people who made the trek.

Many may take issue with some of Lemann's analysis. But you should be able to find truths and insights in the The Promised Land without buying into all of his sociology.
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Author:Bolden, Tonya
Publication:Black Enterprise
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Feb 1, 1992
Previous Article:Race and History: Selected Essays, 1938-1988.
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