SALE! Save 40% on Religious Studies and other print books with Discount Code 01REL40. See details.

Save 40% on Religious Studies and other print books with Discount Code 01REL40! (Details)

Black in Place

The Spatial Aesthetics of Race in a Post-Chocolate City

By Brandi Thompson Summers

256 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 16 halftones, 1 table

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-5401-0
    Published: November 2019
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4696-5400-3
    Published: November 2019
  • eBook ISBN: 978-1-4696-5402-7
    Published: September 2019

Paperback Available November 2019, but pre-order your copy today!

Buy this Book

For Professors:
Free E-Exam Copies

While Washington, D.C., is still often referred to as “Chocolate City,” it has undergone significant demographic, political, and economic change in the last decade. In D.C., no place represents this shift better than the H Street corridor. In this book, Brandi Thompson Summers documents D.C.’s shift to a “post-chocolate” cosmopolitan metropolis by charting H Street’s economic and racial developments. In doing so, she offers a theoretical framework for understanding how blackness is aestheticized and deployed to organize landscapes and raise capital. Summers focuses on the continuing significance of blackness in a place like the nation’s capital, how blackness contributes to our understanding of contemporary urbanization, and how it laid an important foundation for how Black people have been thought to exist in cities. Summers also analyzes how blackness—as a representation of diversity—is marketed to sell a progressive, “cool,” and authentic experience of being in and moving through an urban center.

Using a mix of participant observation, visual and media analysis, interviews, and archival research, Summers shows how blackness has become a prized and lucrative aesthetic that often excludes D.C.’s Black residents.

About the Author

Brandi Thompson Summers is assistant professor of geography at the University of California, Berkeley.
For more information about Brandi Thompson Summers, visit the Author Page.

Reviews

Black in Place is a beautiful, critical, and searing narrative of displacement on H Street, the most heartbreaking and telling of all of the gentrification processes in the Chocolate City. Brandi Thompson Summers has written the book you need to read to understand how racism, capitalism, and power, material and symbolic, collide in the modern American city with constraining and calamitous outcomes for working class Black residents.”—Zandria F. Robinson, author of This Ain’t Chicago

“Sitting at the intersection of human geography, cultural studies, and Black studies, Black in Place brings new cutting edge perspectives to each of these fields. A both timely and important book.”—Rashad Shabazz, Arizona State University