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The Green Book Project

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The Green Book Project is a work-in-progress series of publications and interactive installations that reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in this era of “New Jim Crows.” 

The Negro Motorist Green Book was created by Victor Hugo Green. He started publishing it in 1936  when Jim Crow had legalized segregation and racialized spaces were highly visible. It listed “safe” places for Black travelers or as John Williams describes “[places] Negroes can stay without being embarrassed,  insulted, or worse... [Black] people have a way of disappearing on the road." In 1966 when The Civil Rights act abolished segregation, Green thought the US was moving towards a place of “equal opportunities and privileges for Blacks” and stopped publishing his book. However, five decades later, Black Americans are still fighting for racial equality and disappearing through the “New Jim Crows” of mass incarceration (e.g., Kalief Browder) and police brutality (e.g., Sandra Bland). So, the US still isn’t where Green thought it’d be when he stopped publishing his book. 

In 1900, W. E. B. Du Bois mappe… View full description

The Green Book Project is a work-in-progress series of publications and interactive installations that reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in this era of “New Jim Crows.” 

The Negro Motorist Green Book was created by Victor Hugo Green. He started publishing it in 1936  when Jim Crow had legalized segregation and racialized spaces were highly visible. It listed “safe” places for Black travelers or as John Williams describes “[places] Negroes can stay without being embarrassed,  insulted, or worse... [Black] people have a way of disappearing on the road." In 1966 when The Civil Rights act abolished segregation, Green thought the US was moving towards a place of “equal opportunities and privileges for Blacks” and stopped publishing his book. However, five decades later, Black Americans are still fighting for racial equality and disappearing through the “New Jim Crows” of mass incarceration (e.g., Kalief Browder) and police brutality (e.g., Sandra Bland). So, the US still isn’t where Green thought it’d be when he stopped publishing his book. 

In 1900, W. E. B. Du Bois mapped the state of Black life through a series of hand-drawn charts and maps. Now,  we’re mapping the state of Black mobility and safety today through a series of big data and oral history powered publications and multimedia installations, titled The Green Book Project. It will reimagine the Negro Motorist Green Book for “traveling while Black” in this era of “New Jim Crows."

Through this research, we created a course titled Black Mobility and Safety in the US. It’s a discussion-based seminar and workshop which explores the various modes of being Black (physically, mentally, socio-economically, politically, etc), doing anything while Black (e.g., "driving while Black") and racist ideas and policies through a series of words, images, and sounds: readings (articles, books), screenings (films), listenings (songs, poetry readings), viewings (artworks, exhibitions, locally in-person and/or online), guest lectures (ranging from artists to social and environmental scientists), and discussions. Throughout two semesters, every two weeks we explore these topics: Birthing while Black, Breathing while Black, Sleeping while Black, Eating while Black, Walking while Black, Learning while Black, Swimming while Black, Driving while Black, Loving while Black, Dying while Black.