Washington University Study to Examine Racial Segregation in St. Louis

Divided City F14

African Americans in St. Louis, 1964 From the Washington University archives.

Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, has embarked on a four-year study that will examine racial segregation from a variety of perspectives. The project, entitled “The Divided City: An Urban Humanities Initiative,” is funded in part by a $650,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

The initiative will look at racial segregation in St. Louis from the perspective of several academic disciplines including architecture, anthropology, business, economics, landscape architecture, law, public health, social work, and urban design. The project will include the collection of oral histories, a public survey, a summer seminar program in urban humanities,  development of new curricula on racial segregation, and the establishment of a Divided City digital archive.

Jean Allman, the J.H. Hexter Professor in the Humanities and professor of history at the university and a co-principal investigator says that St. Louis “sits on the border between North and South. It has profound legacies of racism and segregation, of expansion and decline.”


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