Dr. Kelley is the author of “Hammer and Hoe: Alabama Communists During the Great Depression,” and Gary B. Nash Professor of American History at U.C.L.A. He will join us to discuss the history and significance of the BAmazon Union struggle and its connections to the period analyzed in his book.
Alabama — particularly the Birmingham-Bessemer area — has a centuries-old tradition of Black-led organizing against enslavement, racist land seizures, Jim Crow racism, prison-convict labor, segregation laws and Ku Klux Klan violence. Within living memory of the Amazon workers and their families is their starkly dedicated struggle against white-supremacist assassinations and bombings of Black churches and homes during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.
In 1990, Dr. Kelley published the phenomenal book “Hammer and Hoe: The Alabama Communist Party 1928-1951,” documenting the 23-year history of the Alabama Communist Party.
Formed and molded by Black sharecroppers and laborers such as Black revolutionary Hosea Hudson, the ACP went above and beyond fighting for the rights of laborers and workers, Black and white, to the rights to housing, food and equal pay.
Dr. Kelley has also endorsed the call for actions on March 20, and this upcoming day of solidarity with Bessemer workers and against Amazon union-busting will be discussed on Tuesday’s webinar. Let us know what you’re planning in your area by submitting details here.