Creating a Timeline

I noticed events tended to cluster early in the morning or late at night. I didn’t have as many events throughout the middle of the day. A lot of events also seemed to lead to or trigger one another. Naturally if there is a disturbance at the bus stop then there will be a disturbance on and off the bus following the ride.

I would say that not only most of the data is in clusters, but they are also connected in time as well. Most of the data I collected had distinct categories but where I didn’t I decided to opt for calling it a confrontation if it didn’t fit a particular group which could make my data appear to rigid as if there were extremely clear categories but it is a data creation preference of mine.

The gaps in the timeline could but from unreported incidents or the gaps in my timeline due to recording data errors. Having a wider range or more sources would be able to fill in those gaps, but just as we learned in class if the police are not reporting their own incidents and can’t come up with the information, besides reports how are we supposed to know that they happened.

There are around 10 events missing from my timeline that is on my spreadsheet, I determined that it wouldn’t add any supporting evidence that had not already been included and removed it from the timeline assignment. I do have missing data; I remember reading about police on black violence, but it was hard to find unless it was in one of the scanned newspapers. This could explain the gaps in data that I saw because the rioting didn’t stop, I am just missing information.

I’ve settled my decision on a Race Riot because in the Detroit’s riots there isn’t one group that is at fault for the event but both sides are senselessly targeting each other duo to bubbling up conflicts and pressures at the time. We have whites and blacks stoning each other, looting, destruction of property. So, rather than a planned action to this was more people caught up in the hysteria and making a dangerous situation worse. Knowing the events definitely helps because I clearly denote specific events that happened in the riot that I can base my opinion on.


Creating Data

In my last assignment, I evaluated my data as an uprising but as I had mentioned it had no political drive behind it. After further gathering my dad it would be more accurate to describe it as a  race riot or a major disorder because there is no clear side, and to pick a specific title would be making concessions and further applying incorrect labels.

My data Strongly Agrees with the label I have now applied to my event because there is nonsensical violence between both white and black populations but I cannot put a label to choose among the groups.

Major Disorder: Neutral Language because the upheavals evoked such varying Responses within the communities where they occurred. To choose another label would be choosing among groups. Lasting longer than 2 days sizeable crowds and national guard.

Riot: One group publicly with little to no attempt at concealment illegally assaulting at least one other group or illegally attacking invading property.

Knowing the details of my event definitely helped me find a more suitable label because I can specifically see what is happening when and to whom. I was already growing closer to this decision on our last assignment simply because we had more articles to draw from but now this solidified my findings further.

Creating a Text Analysis

The most frequent racial language that appear in my collection is white (102) and colored (100). This language is to be expected because we won’t be seeing words like black or African American because they have not been deemed appropriate at this time yet. However the transition from colored to negro is apparent with negro being used 59 times and negroes being used 43.

I had a multitude of OCR errors among the results, so I attempted to scrub them all from the list and graphs when inputting stop words. The most frequent words in the corpus were expected being police, rioting, Detroit, June, and belle (excluding racial language). In respect to the event and less the location scrubbing words like Detriot allowed me to find the the most frequent words being

Police, rioting, riot, isle, and bridge.

In the black newspaper the 5 most distinctive words were learn, Monday, yelled, house and citizen.

In the white newspaper the 5 most distinctive words were, military, late, fear, burned, and bars.

Lastly for the final report the 5 most distinctive words were boys, time, percent, forest, and Lyons.

I was surprised in black newspapers learn was the most distinctive word, while in the white newspaper it was military. However, after looking into the content in the document it was an OCR error meaning the truly most used word in the black newspaper was Monday. Now floor has made it onto the list of most distinctive words as well.

From frequent words I am going to be looking into how police is used in context while for distinctive I will be looking into Monday. It was interesting to see how he weight the newspapers put on different events. Although the words all have the same meaning the white and black newspapers put more emphasis on Monday, the black newspaper more so than the white. But the final report did not, this makes sense because when getting news out to the audience for an event that just occurred Monday is an okay description but for the final report June 1943 is far more acceptable. In respect to racial language I noticed that the black newspaper used colored far more frequently than the negro and the white newspaper was the opposite. I can assume this either means that the white newspaper did not know the black community had a preference. Or thought of the change as nonsensical. Meanwhile the word white was used at a far greater frequency in the white newspaper than the black newspaper. This suggest that the white newspaper could be more worried about how it affected the white community. With that in mind combining the use of colored and negro the black newspaper also used it at a higher frequency in total than white. Which once again makes sense because we are even classifying the newspapers as white and black so they would want information my relevant to their respective audiences. Now when comparing this to the final report its relative frequency of racial language is almost identical leading me to believe this is a more non-bias source.  However, it also has the advantage of reporting on the riot far after it had occurred with greater accuracy.

I believe my text analysis does not fit the identity of the key features of my riot. Knowing the language used and what sources they were coming from and the context in which it is used has change my opinion. Initially it appeared to be a pogrom which is an attack on a group that is approved or condoned by the authorities which is completely incorrect. I blurred the lines between condoned and following orders which lead me to believe this. I believe a more accurate description would be an uprising. An uprising is a spontaneous upsurge of protest of violent expression of discontent, something with political content but short of a fill fledged revolutionary act. I am not completely satisfied with this title either because there is less a political nature to the Detroit riot, however there was clear social discontent and gave me the impression of a pot boiling over. Due to the discontent on both sides’ situations escalated quickly.

The 5 most frequent words in the corpus and their frequency across documents.

The 5 most distinctive words in the final report their frequency across documents.

The 5 most distinctive words in the black newspaper and their frequency across documents.

The 5 most distinctive words in the white newspaper and their frequency across documents.

Analyza a Riot (Detroit, 1943)

A Pogram is an assault condoned by officials to destroy a community. The Detriot Pogram was a major disorder. It is believed to have been started over a recreational dispute when african americans were kicked out of an amusement park and had to walk three miles to a public beach where the Pogram occurred. The follwo riot resulted in 34 deaths, 760 injured, and 2 million dollars worth of property damage over the span of three days.  Chaos followed when white mobs took to the streets. They threw african americans out of their cars a targeted black officials, one of whom was a physician who was on the “white” side of town, the west. The dispute occurred on the “black” side of the city in the east. When law enforcement got involved they tried to send citizens to their respective sides but it did not fix the violence. Of the  34 confirmed deaths all of whom were black,16 murders were committed by police officers. It was stated that the officers were explicitly told to use lethal force. It eventually became too much for the local police to handle so they received aid from the government and under a state emergency federal troops arrived. A quote that stuck out to me was, “Black movement was the moral equivalent of war.” Yes, both sides could have definitely handled to the situation better, but with that being said the disparity in loss and targeting of the black community constitutes this riot as a pogram.





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