The lynching of sicilian immigrants in the American South, 1886 to 1910

Webb, Clive (2002) The lynching of sicilian immigrants in the American South, 1886 to 1910. American Nineteenth Century History, 3 (1). pp. 45-76. ISSN 1466-4658

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Abstract

In recent years scholars have produced numerous important studies of white mob violence against African Americans. The lynching of white ethnics nonetheless remains a relatively neglected subject. This article looks beyond the black-white paradigm by analyzing the causes and characteristics of mob attacks on Sicilian immigrants. Between 1886 and 1910, southern lynch mobs murdered 27 Sicilians. The mobs were motivated by a number of factors, including racial enmity and economic competition. Sicilians were not passive victims of mob violence. In assessing the nature of Sicilian resistance, the article draws explicit contrasts with the experience of African Americans. Sicilians, especially the diplomatic representatives who lobbied Washington for redress, commanded stronger institutional resources than African Americans. It is this political leverage that explains the more sudden decline of anti-Sicilian violence in the South.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Subjects: E History America > E151 United States (General) > E0660 Late nineteenth century, 1865-1900
E History America > E151 United States (General)
Depositing User: Clive Webb
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:29
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2012 15:14
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/26154
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