Faculty Emeriti

Michael K Brown
  • Title
    • Research Professor of Politics
  • Division Social Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Politics Department
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Office Location
    • 727 Moraga Street, San Francisco CA
  • Mail Stop Merrill/Crown Faculty Services
  • Mailing Address
    • 1156 High Street
    • Santa Cruz CA 95064

Research Interests

Professor Brown is currently investigating the relationship between changing conceptions of equality of opportunity and racial inequality since the end of slavery in the United States. This study is based on a comparative analysis of the creation, operation, and outcome of the policies and practices of the Freedmen's Bureau during Reconstruction, Franklin Roosevelt's Farm Security Administration in the 1930s, and Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty during the 1960s in six southern states: Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina.  In each period, different conceptions of equality and equality of opportunity were at the center of political debate and conflict between African Americans and whites and of national policies created to respond to the end of slavery, the collapse of southern sharecropping and displacement of black farmers in the 1930s, and the civil rights movement in the 1960s.



Selected Publications


2003  (Co-Author) Whitewashing Race: The Myth of a Color-blind Society (University of California Press)  Winner of the 1st Annual Benjamin L. Hooks Outstanding Book Award; Gustavus Myers Outstanding Books Award.

1999  Race, Money and the American Welfare State (Cornell University Press).

1988  Working the Street: Police Discretion and the Dilemmas of Reform, with a new epilogue, "Race, Reform and the American Police in the 1980s (Russell Sage Foundation).

1988  (Editor), Remaking the Welfare State: Retrenchment and Social Policy in America and Europe (Temple University Press)

Selected Articles and Essays:

2013 Divergent Fates: The Foundations of Durable Racial Inequality, 1940-2013, (DEMOS & Rockefeller Foundation; Background study for conference on New Economic Paradigms).

2013  Race and Equality of Opportunity in American Political Development, Politics, Groups, and Identities, 1:2, pp. 232-236.

2009  The Death Penalty and the Politics of Racial Resentment in the Post Civil Rights Era, De Paul Law Review, 58, pp. 645-670.

2008  Saving Souls Won't Save Children: Religion and the Pre-History of the American Welfare State, Journal of Urban History, 34:2 pp. 362-369.

2005  (Co-Author) Embedding the Color Line: The Accumulation of Racial Advantage and the Disaccumulation of Opportunity in Post Civil Rights America, Du Bois Review,2:2 pp 187-208.

2003  Ghettos, Fiscal Federalism, and Welfare Reform in Race, Welfare and the Politics of Reform, eds. Richard Fording, Joe Soss, and Sanford Schram (University of Michigan Press), pp. 93-122.

2000  Is Race Experienced as Class? Labor History, 41:4 pp;. 513-516.