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Point of Reckoning

Point of Reckoning

The Fight for Racial Justice at Duke University

by Theodore D. Segal

Published by: Duke University Press Books

400 pages, 152.00 x 229.00 x 0.00 mm, 30 illustrations

  • ISBN: 9781478011422
  • Published: February 2021


On the morning of February 13, 1969, members of Duke University's Afro-American Society barricaded themselves inside the Allen administration building. That evening, police were summoned to clear the building, firing tear gas at students in the melee that followed. When it was over, nearly twenty people were taken to the hospital, and many more injured. In Point of Reckoning, Theodore D. Segal narrates the contested fight for racial justice at Duke from the enrollment of the first Black undergraduates in 1963 to the events that led to the Allen Building takeover and beyond. Segal shows that Duke's first Black students quickly recognized that the university was unwilling to acknowledge their presence or fully address its segregationist past. By exposing the tortuous dynamics that played out as racial progress stalled at Duke, Segal tells both a local and national story about the challenges that historically white colleges and universities throughout the country have faced and continue to face.