Talk:Black flight

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Black flight from CA[edit]

I've moved these comments here, as for some reason they were not showing when saved at the end of the Talk page. What is going on with the page?

Find a reliable, third-party source for such speculation. Most commentators have related the movement more to new job opportunities, plus continuing family ties in the South, as well as rising housing prices and fewer jobs in some western cities, less to pressure from new immigrants. Neighborhoods have changed as new immigrants have moved into housing occupied formerly by other groups.--Parkwells (talk) 18:35, 21 April 2011 (UTC)
Researchers have documented that the reasons are more about availability of jobs and affordable housing in the South.Parkwells (talk) 18:35, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

Use correct citation formats[edit]

Editors are getting sloppy - please use the correct formats, so others don't have to do your work. You are supposed to give the author, title of book or article, publisher or website, date of article or year of book, and date (month, day and year) of your retrieval or accessing an online reference.Parkwells (talk) 18:35, 21 April 2011 (UTC)


I've looked around and not found many sources to support this. (I'm not saying that it isn't plausible, just that we need sources.) Some of the sources that I did find talked about the 1930s Great Migration instead. Without support for this idea, as significant trend shaping neighborhoods and the movements of people I'm uncertain what the purpose of this article is? I wonder if it should be scaled back so that it only covers things that we can source? futurebird 15:25, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

The Great Migration doesn't fit with the thesis of this article, which is more about people seeking better housing and schools. If the Great Migration is to be part of it, then I think there needs to be a new title and overall theme, more along the lines of African American Migrations in the US. Then you could add
1) forced migrations, the early 19th c. sales of enslaved African Americans from KY, MD and VA, for instance, to the Deep South, which affected more than 100,000 people. Other similar migrations were when planters took slaves with them, for instance, from coastal communities of SC and GA, into the uplands to cultivate short-staple cotton;
2) migrations after the Civil War - tens of thousands of African Americans moved from plantation to town, or between states to gain more opportunities(documented at level of overall state population and demographic changes);
3) Great Migration;
4) post-Civil Rights legislation movement to suburbs;
5) late 20th-early 21st century movement to suburbs (by which African Americans join the mainstream of suburban residents - but I don't know about numbers. Most Americans live in suburbs, though).
Maybe each of those categories, like the Great Migration, deserve their own page/article. I have to look at the Civil Rights Movement material again; don't know how far it went in terms of results.--Parkwells 14:42, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

>>>>The purpose of the article is to lend some sociological context to the gentrification article. Look around many major US city and you will find black folks like me "flying away" for a number of different reasons. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:03, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

I'd have to look for sources, but have indeed seen some of this documented. I think there have been two movements -

1) An early one when the Civil Rights Act of 1964 made it easier/possible for middle and upper class blacks to move to the suburbs and buy into upgraded housing. Many then left the cities. The African American scholar William Julius Wilson, working at U of Chicago, noted how inner city neighborhoods changed after the exodus of the middle class, when there was left a concentration of poor people in dysfunctional families. I lived in Washington, DC for years, and the changes in Prince Georges county and other close-in suburbs were closely studied. Many middle and upper class blacks moved from the District to Prince Georges County, MD, for new housing, better neighborhoods and schools for their children, where they now constitute a majority.

2) More recently, there have been a round of new moves, with new pushes and pulls:

  - African Americans (and other ethnicities) leaving New York, for instance, because of the astronomical price of housing;
  - African Americans choosing to migrate back to the South, where social conditions have improved since the Great Migration and Civil Rights Movement, and where some still have extended families, or choose to move there to have a safer environment than some inner cities;
  - African Americans choosing to follow the last two decades of migration of industry and jobs to the South, some of which moved because of more open land and cheaper costs of construction, plus local and state governments' policies favoring business to attract new jobs, and originally weak union organizations.
If the purpose of the article is to relate to recent gentrification in cities, then I don't think the Great Migration should be included at all. The reasons for that were very different compared to movement after the Civil Rights Act in the 1960's, or more recently. If the article is to be about black migrations, it will almost be too broad to be useful. --Parkwells 23:59, 5 November 2007 (UTC) Put some material above in better location.--Parkwells 14:42, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

Black flight article making strange claims.[edit]

This article lacks sources and makes a lot of claims about american cities especially with regard to Black and Latino populations.

The phenomenon of black flight has resulted in dramatic demographic shifts in some of the countries poorest inner-city neighborhoods. American blacks comprised more than 75% of all inner-city residents in the 1990's compared to just 27% in 2006. Black flight has allowed a rising poor class to emerge in many large cities, the Hispanic lower class. Hispanics today make up the majority of the population in 33 of the 50 largest cities in the United States, whereas just 20 years ago only 1 large city, Los Angeles, had a Hispanic majority. On the reverse, African Americans made up a majority in 28 of the 50 largest US cities 20 years ago, but today only make up a majority in 6 of the 50 largest cities.

Although, I've read some thing about small to moderate numbers of black people moving to the suburbs, I can't find anything about it being a large scale "flight" --let alone one that is related to "Hispanics." Especially without a sources, this seems like it might be POV pushing.

Ethnic Cleansing in L.A.
Acting on orders from the Mexican Mafia, Latino gang members in Southern California are terrorizing and killing blacks. AThousandYoung (talk) 19:55, 18 March 2010 (UTC)

I'm not just asking if the numbers are correct, they may be, but, this article seems to be trying to draw a parallel between White flight (from Blacks to Black flight from Hispanics, which seems absurd...

So it's not just that we need to source the stats, we also need to source them in relation to a "black flight" --otherwise, this is original research.

futurebird 15:52, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

The article has a strange history; it was created by a user with the handle "FittyPackaWings", who has done nothing since. I concur that it seems to me to have an odor of POV-pushing about it. --Orange Mike 16:14, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
I think we should start by finding every *solid source* that talks about Black flight. futurebird 16:20, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
This section had an awkward approach. It would be better to talk about movement rather than flight. What the US has seen is that more established populations will move to better housing, and newer (and usually poorer) immigrants will take over older housing. This is more obvious in New York, which now can trace successive waves of immigrants in many areas of the city. There have been changes in Los Angeles, but they are the result of two movements: some blacks aging and dying, and others moving out; and increased numbers of Hispanic immigrants moving in. We don't always have to call it "flight" simply to see that populations change. In his "After the Fact" (1995), the anthropologist Clifford Geertz documented similar changes in a city in Morocco, as poor, rural migrants moved into a center city, and more established, wealthier populations moved to the outskirts.--Parkwells 16:59, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Car Culture[edit]

I doubt if car culture in the way the article details, is much of a reason for people to move to the suburbs, but they make suburban living possible. Yes, African Americans may want the same kind of cars, but they probably plan the move first and know they'll get cars.--Parkwells 17:13, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

>>>>>Sure it is, as cities become more developed with "infill" redevelopment condos, many of them are built on parking lots, which dissappear, and this has a supply and demand effect on the cost of parking a car in a city. -FittyPackaWings —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:50, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

What I meant was that the cost of parking was unlikely to be as important factor as people seeking newer/upgraded housing or better schools and neighborhoods for their kids.--Parkwells 14:20, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

What I found[edit]

Black flight describes Blacks choosing charter schools over Public Schools due to dissatisfaction with the public education system or leaving for suburban public schools to avoid city-run public schools.

Black flight is due to the gentrification of inner city neighborhoods and the resurgent economic health of some American cities.

futurebird 16:36, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

I haven't had a chance to look up anything specific yet. But I know there should be information tied to places like Lithonia and Cascade in the Atlanta area. They're large, affluent, overwhelmingly Black communities in the suburbs. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Crownjewel82 (talkcontribs)


I think this article should stick to sources that use the phrase "black flight" and simply explain how the phrase has been used. The phrase is, of course, primarily a play on the expression white flight and seems to be used, mostly by journalist to try to indicate a new era in population movements away from segregation or in some case to indicate new forms of potential injustice with respect to education.

Sounds fine to me. FittyPackaWing came back to talk about the cost of parking in inner cities (above) but hasn't added any citations. I moved the Car Culture section down in the article and deleted the paragraph on Great Migration.--Parkwells 17:57, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

The fact, for example, that the black population of Manhattan is shrinking for the first time in decades may have more to do with people being displaced by gentrification than people simply seeking a "typical suburban life" outside the city. But, in other cases people are suburbanizing because they have more money, and it could be called positive.

I put in the info about the great migration earlier because I felt that this article lacked focus, and I didn't know if its existence could be justified. I've changed my mind since I found these sources so feel free to remove it. I think the "car culture" stuff can stay, provided there is a source that talks about car culture specifically with respect to African American and suburbanization. futurebird 15:27, 8 November 2007 (UTC)


Yes, the article needs sourcing, but Civil Rights legislation absolutely did have something to do with middle class blacks moving out of inner cities, because they had more housing options. Those were earlier moves than the "black flight" this article talks about, but related to the same impulse of finding better, newer housing and better schools. William Julius Wilson did a lot of work looking at how the movement of middle and upper class blacks out of Chicago hollowed out the community, reduced density - then businesses failed, and left the poorest and dysfunctional families. --Parkwells (talk) 14:54, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

More thoroughly, Wilson looked at the loss of middle class jobs in inner cities, including loss of manufacturing jobs; move of jobs and middle class to suburbs; and concentration of wealth and poverty in the city.--Parkwells (talk) 18:52, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Title - Black Flight[edit]

You can see by some of the sources that it is the journalists who have named and are using the term "black flight" as a way to talk about blacks moving out of inner cities where they had some traditional neighborhoods. While the journalists are noticing changes of the last decade or so, the suburbanization of middle class black America has been proceeding for decades. I think the title should stay, and the article refer to both aspects of suburbanization. That said, i think "flight" was overused about changes in white population as well as changes in black demographics. It's now clear that neighborhoods frequently undergo succession changes. --Parkwells (talk) 16:25, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Black flight and New Great Migration[edit]

Suburbanization has been going on for a while, but the bigger issue is the reverse migration of African Americans to the South, especially college graduates and middle class, who are going there for good jobs and housing. I've tried to touch on that in this article, and have started a stub for New Great Migration, now a more than 35-year trend.--Parkwells (talk) 23:18, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Black flight - alternate meaning outside the USA?[edit]

A few years ago I was studying in Bradford, UK and I heard about an interesting phenomenon there. The term black flight there had an alternative meaning and referred to the long established and largely Christian Afro-Caribbean communities in certain parts of the city moving away from their traditional neighborhoods due to the recent (post 1960) influx of Pakistani Muslims. It's almost a parallel of the white flight phenomenon, for exactly the same reasons. I haven't any data to confirm or deny this, but I will hunt around. I do know that the notorious Manningham district, center of the race riots in the early 21st center, is supposed to have been the epicenter of black flight in the city. I am curious to learn, as this article deals mainly with the emigration of middle class Americans from the inner city, if this is seen in other parts of the world? If so, does anyone have any links or book references? -- (talk) 00:33, 13 November 2008 (UTC)

I think what you describe (and some of the movement of black Americans into suburbs) is more related to the succession of populations in cities - those who are more prosperous generally move out to newer housing, and those who are new immigrants (and sometimes more poor) move into transition areas. The fact that it regularly occurs should make people stop calling it flight - one group after another wants to stay with its own community, food, churches/religious organizations, etc. and will move to do so.--Parkwells (talk) 15:15, 14 October 2009 (UTC)

Black flight in california[edit]

Because of immigration many african americans are moving from the West to the South. Isn't this worth mention? —Preceding unsigned comment added by YVNP (talkcontribs) 09:51, 18 November 2008 (UTC)