A Stone of Hope: Prophetic Religion and the Death of Jim Crow by David L. ChappellArgues that the story of civil rights is not a story of the ultimate triumph of liberal ideas after decades of gradual progress. Rather, it is a story of the power of religious tradition. Chappell reconsiders the intellectual roots of civil rights reform, showing how northern liberals' faith in the power of human reason to overcome prejudice was at odds with the movement's goal of immediate change.
Reforming Jim Crow: Southern Politics and State in the Age before Brown by Kimberley JohnsonFocusing on the political development of the South between 1910 and 1954, Johnson considers the genuine efforts by white and black progressives to reform the system without destroying it. Consequently, white progressives tried to install a better--meaning more equitable--separate-but-equal system, and elite black reformers focused on ameliorative (rather than confrontational) solutions that would improve the lives of African Americans.