Elijah Anderson Biography

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BACKGROUND

In 1943, Dr. Elijah Anderson was born in the Mississippi Delta in the middle of World War II. In his family of five, Dr. Anderson was the middle child. His grandmother resided with them, serving as the midwife. During this time, his parents were southern sharecroppers that picked and chopped cotton for a living. However, his father, Leighton, also drove a truck in the Army Infantry during World War II. With only a fourth grade education, Dr. Anderson’s father was able to get a job in the Industrial Midwest were two of Dr. Anderson’s uncles lived. In this time of racial segregation, his family participated in the Great Migration movement, relocating to South Blend, Indiana. Here his father had a well-paid job at the foundry of the
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Anderson was very active. He played football, basketball, and also ran track. His curiosity and independence lead him to falling in love with the streets located on his side of town. At the age of 10, Dr. Anderson curiosity lead him to finding his first job. At 10 years old, he began selling newspapers on downtown street corners. When he turned 11, he found a job that allowed him to set pins at a downtown bowling alley. When he turned 12, he convinced himself that it was time for a real job. Desperately, Dr. Anderson went door to door to every merchant in the downtown of South Blend, Indiana asking for a job. To his luck, an owner of a local typewriter company by the name of Marion Forbes hired him. Determined to do what the other boys in the company were able to do, Dr. Anderson made it his business to do better than whatever they did. His determination allowed him to work everyday after school including Saturday’s for 50 cents per hour. At Forbes typewriter, his duties consisted of emptying baskets, washing windows, and doing handyman work. His apprenticeship later allowed him to clean and repair typewriters in the shop. While working at Forbes Typewriter, Mr. Forbes gave Dr. Alexander time off so that he could participate in extracurricular activities such as basketball, track, football, and other activities. Inspired by his peers, he developed a sudden interest in higher education due to athletic scholarships. Because of this he began to look forward to…show more content…
Elijah Anderson is the William K. Lanman professor of Sociology at Yale University with special interests in urban inequality, ethnography, special deviance, cultural sociology, race relations, and theory. He has held many leadership roles such as being one of the top leading urban ethnographers and social theorists in the United States. He has served on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. His other leadership roles include being the vice president of the American Sociological Association; editor for professional journals and publications such as Qualitative Sociology, Ethnography, American Journal of Sociology, American Sociological Review, City and Community, Annals of the Society of Political and Social Science, and the International Journal of Urban and regional Research; and consultant to the White House, U.S. Congress, National Academy of Science, and the National Science

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