Political Science, Department of


Date of this Version

July 2000


Published in JOURNAL OF BLACK STUDIES, Vol. 30, No. 6 (July 2000), pp. 791-814. © 2000 Sage Publications, Inc. Used by permission.


The Voting Rights Act of 1965 dramatically increased the number of Black legislators in the state of Mississippi. Prior to the passage of the Voting Rights Act, African Americans had not served in the Mississippi state legislature since 1896. However, by 1988, 22 African Americans gained seats in the state legislature. In this descriptive analysis, the evolution, nature of the membership, and substantive impact of the Mississippi Legislative Black Caucus are assessed.