Strange Career offers a clear and illuminating analysis of the history of Jim Crow laws and American race relations. This book presented evidence that segregation in the South dated only to the 1880s. It's publication in 1955, a year after the Supreme Court ordered schools be desegregated,helped counter arguments that the ruling would destoy a centuries-old way of life. The commemorative edition includes a special afterword by William S. McFeely, former Woodward student and winner of both the 1982 Pulitzer Prize and 1992 Lincoln Prize. As William McFeely describes in the newafterword, 'the slim volume's social consequence far outstripped its importance to academia. The book became part of a revolution...The Civil Rights Movement had changed Woodward's South and his slim, quietly insistent book...had contributed to that change.'