Topic: Race

Timeline: A Century of American Philanthropy’s Engagement with Race and Racism

Delving into a century of philanthropic engagement with race, from Reconstruction to the Civil Rights era.

“Highest Standards”: Elite Philanthropy and Literary Black Voices during the Civil Rights Era

Against a backdrop of white, establishment concepts of literary excellence, one foundation struggled to appreciate Black voices.

Funding a Social Movement: The Ford Foundation and Civil Rights, 1965-1970

A story recounting many accusations, from rigged elections to the meddling of big private money in grassroots organizing.

New Research: Black Conservatives, Climate Policy, African Universities, and Aid to Intellectuals

Research reports drawing on several Rockefeller Archive Center collections span continents, disciplines, and eras.

Black Education and Rockefeller Philanthropy from the Jim Crow South to the Civil Rights Era

Applying a vast fortune to the American race problem, but with decades of false assumptions and well-intended approaches that fell short.

In Brief: The South African Institute of Race Relations

How did a US foundation manage to work under apartheid?

Who Belongs in the Boy Scouts? Philanthropy’s Support for Black Scouting

A foundation struggled to make one of America’s oldest youth organizations more racially inclusive. But it only got so far under Jim Crow.

In Brief: James Baldwin’s Creative Writer’s Fellowship

How a foundation provided the final ingredient to an era-defining novel.

Ted Watkins and the Rockefeller Foundation: An Unlikely Partnership

How a charismatic community activist from Watts challenged a foundation’s civil rights strategy through a jobs training program.

Photo Essay: Supporting Minority Enterprise in the late 1960s

In 1968, the Ford Foundation began to make social investments using a new tool borrowed from the for-profit world, the Program-Related Investment.