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From Swastika to Jim Crow


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Many of the teachers and students at the historically Black colleges in the South of went on to pursue illustrious careers and often, social reform. What became of the refugee scholars in FROM SWASTIKA TO JIM CROW? And their devoted students, where are they now?

Ernst Borinski
Ernst Borinski
Professor of Sociology, German and Russian
Tougaloo College, Mississippi (1947-1983)

Ernst Borinski's legendary Sociology Science Forums served to bridge the gap between the races, bringing together Tougaloo students with members of the surrounding White communities. Borinski taught at Tougaloo until his death in 1983, at 82 years of age. There is a building complex named for him and he is buried in a small cemetery on campus.

In January 2000, the college sponsored their first annual history conference in his honor, featuring numerous contemporary American scholars and academics. The Mississippi ACLU gives out an annual award in his name.

John Herz
John Herz
Professor of Political Science
Howard University, Washington, D.C.
(1941-1943 and 1948-1952)

Dr. Herz moved to New York, where he took a position at City College. He has written or contributed to numerous books and publications, including International Politics in the Atomic Age (1959), Government and Politics in the 20th Century (multiple editions), and From Dictatorship to Democracy ed. (1982). He lives with his wife, Anne, in Westchester and has been a frequent panelist at community screenings of FROM SWASTIKA TO JIM CROW.

Viktor Lowenfeld
Viktor Lowenfeld
Professor of Art
Hampton Institute, Virginia (1939-1946)

After leaving Hampton, Dr. Lowenfeld went on to teach at Penn State University. His work in the field of art education has been called "legendary." The Penn Web site claims, "Penn State became the international center for art education with the arrival of Austrian-born Viktor Lowenfeld in 1946. The most influential art educator of the 20th century, he wrote the field's dominant book, Creative and Mental Growth - based on pioneering work in psychology and the art of the visually impaired - and taught here until his death in 1960."

Ernst Manasse
Ernst Manasse
Professor of German, Latin and Philosophy
North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC (1939-1973)

Manasse retired in 1973 and was later named Professor Emeritus at NCCU. After retirement, Dr. Manasse was able to complete his major scholarly undertaking, an extensive annotated bibliography of all modern books interpreting the Greek philosopher Plato published in English, German and French. He died in Durham in 1997 at the age of 88.

Fritz Pappenheim
Fritz Pappenheim
Professor of German and Economics
Talladega College, Alabama (1944-1952)

After they left Talladega, Fritz and Yvonne Pappenheim moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts. There, Fritz researched and wrote his groundbreaking study The Alienation of Modern Man (1959). He lectured extensively at colleges, universities and organizations. Fritz died in 1964.

Yvonne continues to be an active voice in local and community politics. In 1992, Community Change Inc., a Boston organization working to alleviate racism, awarded Yvonne Pappenheim its Drylongso Award for her contribution as a longtime advocate for social justice.

Lore and Donald Rasmussen
Donald Rasmussen
Professor of Sociology
Talladega College, Alabama (1942-1955)
Lore Rasmussen
Elementary Education instructor
Talledega College, Alabama (1949-1955)

After leaving Talladega in the late 1950s, the Rasmussens continued their teaching careers. Lore went on to develop Miquon Math, a widely used approach to elementary mathematics. Retired and living in California, the Rasmussens continue to be active. They have been gathering oral histories and writing memoirs of civil rights activities in Alabama during the 1940s and 1950s.


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