The Golden Arches in Black America

Ranked #31 in Restaurant, Ranked #42 in Tourism

Often blamed for the rising rates of obesity and diabetes among black Americans, fast food restaurants like McDonald’s have long symbolized capitalism’s villainous effects on our nation’s most vulnerable communities. But how did fast food restaurants so thoroughly saturate black neighborhoods in the first place? In Franchise, acclaimed historian Marcia Chatelain uncovers a surprising history of cooperation among fast food companies, black capitalists, and civil rights leaders, who—in the troubled years after King’s assassination—believed they found an economic answer to the problem... more

Reviews and Recommendations

We've comprehensively compiled reviews of Franchise from the world's leading experts.

Ida Bae Wells I remember sitting in absolute awe the 1st time @DrMChatelain talked abt this book she was writing on McDonalds, race & black capitalism. It was uncovering the story of something you see everyday but think little about, revealing hidden history in the best possible way. Excited! (Source)

Matt Garcia The story of how black entrepreneurs used the predominance of fast food in their communities as an economic development opportunity is brought to light by this book. Chatelain looks at entrepreneurs who take fast food franchises and retrofit them as employment sources and gathering spots for their communities. She talks about how McDonald’s becomes a place, not just of wealth for some black entrepreneurs but also for black Americans to form communal bounds and create political movements. (Source)

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