Introduction: Rethinking the Boston "Busing Crisis"

Matthew Delmont, Jeanne Theoharis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This introduction to a special issue rethinking the Boston "Busing Crisis" seeks to examine how the misleading 'busing crisis' narrative took hold as a way to understand Boston race relations. The piece examines the long struggle for school desegregation in Boston and the myriad of tactics used to deflect and delegitmize that struggle through frames of "busing," "neighborhood schools," "choice," and "cultural deprivation" which provided a palatable way for Bostonians to explain and hide school inequalities. Finally, the piece considers the role of the media in legitimating these white framings and delegitimizing the urgency of the struggle against school inequality in the Cradle of Liberty.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-203
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Urban History
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2017


  • African Americans
  • Bilingual education
  • Boston race relations
  • Boston's busing crisis
  • Civil rights movement
  • Massachusetts
  • Race
  • Ruth Batson
  • School desegregation
  • Segregation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Urban Studies


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