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United States, c. 1960s
Family looking at oven and roast turkey, United States, c. 1960s. Getty Images, H. Armstrong Roberts, Retrofile.

Black Suburbia: From Levittown to Ferguson

What do the suburbs teach us about the black experience, family ideals, community and racial identity? How is the myth of the American Dream complicated by the African American suburban experience? These and other questions are explored in our new exhibition, Black Suburbia: From Levittown to Ferguson, co-presented by The National Center for Suburban Studies at Hofstra University and curated by James Levy of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. This exhibition travels through Hempstead, New York; Shaker Heights, Ohio; Compton and Baldwin Hills, California; and other American suburbs. The collection features photographs, letters, property deeds, personal interviews, artifacts and compelling archival film footage that trace a twentieth century narrative of migration and community building that reveals a rich tapestry of contradictions and the persistence of hope.

The exhibition galleries are open Monday - Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m., unless there is a previously scheduled program or event at the same time and preventing access to the space. 

October 1st, 2015 - January 2nd, 2016 Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

Learn more about this exhibition.

Featured Video

Talks at the Schomburg: Rethinking Ferguson Through the Prism of Suburbia

Watch highlights from our discussion with leading scholars, journalists and activists on the impact of geography on racial dynamics in America. Perceptions of "suburbia" have been challenged recently as suburbs such as Ferguson, Missouri, have become sites of major policing controversies that have resulted in community uprisings. 

Featured Event

Films at the Schomburg: My Block: Strong Island, Part 2

Award-winning filmmaker Jordan Crafton explores the present-day black experience on Long Island in his powerful documentary, My Block: Strong Island Part 2.  Crafton interweaves historical reflection with interviews of Long Island residents, inspired by stories in Hofstra University's Suburban Oral History Project. These narratives personalize the reality of suburban segregation and its consequences.

Featured personalities in the film include NBA Hall of Famer Julius 

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