Author: Maegan Parker Brooks
Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi
Release Date: 2014-04-30
Genre: Social Science
A sharecropper, a warrior, and a truth-telling prophet, Fannie Lou Hamer (1917–1977) stands as a powerful symbol not only of the 1960s black freedom movement, but also of the enduring human struggle against oppression. A Voice That Could Stir an Army is a rhetorical biography that tells the story of Hamer’s life by focusing on how she employed symbols— images, words, and even material objects such as the ballot, food, and clothing—to construct persuasive public personae, to influence audiences, and to effect social change. Drawing upon dozens of newly recovered Hamer texts and recent interviews with Hamer’s friends, family, and fellow activists, Maegan Parker Brooks moves chronologically through Hamer’s life. Brooks recounts Hamer’s early influences, her intersection with the black freedom movement, and her rise to prominence at the 1964 Democratic National Convention. Brooks also considers Hamer’s lesser-known contributions to the fight against poverty and to feminist politics before analyzing how Hamer is remembered posthumously. The book concludes by emphasizing what remains rhetorical about Hamer’s biography, using the 2012 statue and museum dedication in Hamer’s hometown of Ruleville, Mississippi, to examine the larger social, political, and historiographical implications of her legacy. The sustained consideration of Hamer’s wide-ranging use of symbols and the reconstruction of her legacy provided within the pages of A Voice That Could Stir an Army enrich understanding of this key historical figure. This book also demonstrates how rhetorical analysis complements historical reconstruction to explain the dynamics of how social movements actually operate.
Author: Klaus P. Fischer
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2007-05-30
Numerous studies on various aspects of the issues of the 1960s have been written over the past 35 years, but few have so successfully integrated the many-sided components into a coherent, synthetic, and reliable book that combines good storytelling with sound scholarly analysis.
Author: Steven F. Lawson
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
Release Date: 2015-01-13
Over the past thirty years, Steven F. Lawson has established himself as one of the nation's leading historians of the black struggle for equality. Civil Rights Crossroads is an important collection of Lawson's writings about the civil rights movement that is essential reading for anyone concerned about the past, present, and future of race relations in America. Lawson examines the movement from a variety of perspectives -- local and national, political and social -- to offer penetrating insights into the civil rights movement and its influence on contemporary society. Civil Rights Crossroads also illuminates the role of a broad array of civil rights activists, familiar and unfamiliar. Lawson describes the efforts of Martin Luther King Jr. and Lyndon Johnson to shape the direction of the struggle, as well as the extraordinary contributions of ordinary people like Fannie Lou Hamer, Harry T. Moore, Ruth Perry, Theodore Gibson, and many other unsung heroes of the most important social movement of the twentieth century. Lawson also examines the decades-long battle to achieve and expand the right of African Americans to vote and to implement the ballot as the cornerstone of attempts at political liberation.
Author: Maegan Parker Brooks
Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi
Release Date: 2011-05-27
Genre: Political Science
Most people who have heard of Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977) are aware of the impassioned testimony that this Mississippi sharecropper and civil rights activist delivered at the 1964 Democratic National Convention. Far fewer people are familiar with the speeches Hamer delivered at the 1968 and 1972 conventions, to say nothing of addresses she gave closer to home, or with Malcolm X in Harlem, or even at the founding of the National Women's Political Caucus. Until now, dozens of Hamer's speeches have been buried in archival collections and in the basements of movement veterans. After years of combing library archives, government documents, and private collections across the country, Maegan Parker Brooks and Davis W. Houck have selected twenty-one of Hamer's most important speeches and testimonies. As the first volume to exclusively showcase Hamer's talents as an orator, this book includes speeches from the better part of her fifteen-year activist career delivered in response to occasions as distinct as a Vietnam War Moratorium Rally in Berkeley, California, and a summons to testify in a Mississippi courtroom. Brooks and Houck have coupled these heretofore unpublished speeches and testimonies with brief critical descriptions that place Hamer's words in context. The editors also include the last full-length oral history interview Hamer granted, a recent oral history interview Brooks conducted with Hamer's daughter, as well as a bibliography of additional primary and secondary sources. The Speeches of Fannie Lou Hamer demonstrates that there is still much to learn about and from this valiant black freedom movement activist.
The Encyclopedia of Civil Rights in America is a comprehensive, well-organized reference source on the human rights and civil liberties that are legally recognized in the United States. Presented in three volumes, the 677 entries address civil rights issues from a variety of perspectives, such as race, gender, age, medical status or conditions, physical and mental challenges, group membership, religion, and many others. The practical A-Z format makes it especially helpful for students to navigate the enormous amount of information that exists on this important topic.
Ella Josephine Baker (1903-1986) was among the most influential strategists of the most important social movement in modern US history, the Civil Rights Movement, yet most Americans have never heard of her. Behind the scenes, she organized on behalf of the major civil rights organizations of her day—the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the Southern Christian Leadership Council (SCLC), and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)—among many other activist groups. As she once told an interviewer, “[Y]ou didn’t see me on television, you didn’t see news stories about me. The kind of role that I tried to play was to pick up pieces or put pieces together out of which I hoped organization might come. My theory is, strong people don’t need strong leaders.” Rejecting charismatic leadership as a means of social change, Baker invented a form of grassroots community organizing for social justice that had a profound impact on the struggle for civil rights and continues to inspire agents of change on behalf of a wide variety of social issues. In this book, historian J. Todd Moye masterfully reconstructs Baker’s life and contribution for a new generation of readers. Those who despair that the civil rights story is told too often from the top down and at the dearth of accessible works on women who helped shape the movement will welcome this new addition to the Library of African American Biography series, designed to provide concise, readable, and up-to-date lives of leading black figures in American history.
The repressive climate of racial hatred in America that spawned the 1960s civil rights movement also galvanized a generation of bold, persuasive, driven leaders who embodied the qualities of servant leadership. In a time of conflict, turmoil, and tragedy, these passionate and committed African Americans emerged to lead a generation from the cruelties of segregation to the revolution of civil rights reform. Beginning with the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case, Servants of the People follows the lives of eight leaders--figures such as A. Philip Randolph, Adam Clayton Powell Jr., Fannie Lou Hamer, and Ella Baker--who willingly risked their lives for their cause. This revised edition also reflects on the dramatic changes in the African American political landscape since its initial publication, and expands its scope to include more of the women whose efforts were crucial to the success of the civil rights movement.
Author: Lynne Olson
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2001
Profiles the fearless, resourceful female leaders of the civil rights movement, including Ida Wells, who led the protest against lynching, and Jo Ann Robinson, who helped launch the Montgomery bus boycott.
Author: Peter Dreier
Publisher: Nation Books
Release Date: 2012-06-26
A hundred years ago, any soapbox orator who called for women's suffrage, laws protecting the environment, an end to lynching, or a federal minimum wage was considered a utopian dreamer or a dangerous socialist. Now we take these ideas for granted— because the radical ideas of one generation are often the common sense of the next. We all stand on the shoulders of earlier generations of radicals and reformers who challenged the status quo of their day. Unfortunately, most Americans know little of this progressive history. It isn't taught in most high schools. You can't find it on the major television networks. In popular media, the most persistent interpreter of America's radical past is Glenn Beck, who teaches viewers a wildly inaccurate history of unions, civil rights, and the American Left. The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century, a colorful and witty history of the most influential progressive leaders of the twentieth century and beyond, is the perfect antidote.