AF AM 465
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement (3) The civil rights struggle and its impact upon American politics.
AF AM (HIST) 465 The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement (3)
This course focuses on the post-World War II Civil Rights Movement. It begins with a discussion of the "Long Civil Rights Movement," briefly looking at the roots of the movement in the labor movement and social struggles of the Great Depression and World War II. We then turn to the impact of World War II on African Americans, the growing militancy during the war, the struggles over segregation in the military, the growing role of blacks in the labor movement, and the growing link between African Americans and the rising anti-imperial movements that accelerated after the war. We discuss the role of African Americans in the Cold War and the struggles over the role of Communism and Socialism in the emerging Civil Rights Movement. The course is broken down into key topics of the movement years: the rise of localized grassroots movements all over the United States that were led by local people who sought to challenge school segregation, political disfranchisement, poor housing conditions, police brutality, and job discrimination. While legal disfranchisement and segregation existed solely in the southern states, the entire country practiced both and black people suffered the consequences universally. Much time is spent on the more famous southern civil rights movement, with discussions of the Emmett Till Murder of 1955; the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the rise of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference; and the Little Rock Crisis of 1957. The beginning of the 1960s saw the creation of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee and the emergence of key women leaders in the struggle such as Mrs. Ella Baker, Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer, Mrs. Rosa Parks, and Mrs. Septima Clark, to name only a few. We discuss key moments in the 1960s, beginning with SNCC and CORE and the Freedom Rides, the SCLC in Birmingham and Albany; the March on Washington, the 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer and the murders of Chaney, Goodman, Schwerner, and Medgar Evers; the 1965 Selma to Montgomery March, and the final passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act. The emphasis on the southern struggle is on the local, ordinary people who achieved extraordinary things.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.