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Heroines of Civil Rights. Who are these women?. Why do you NOT know their names?. Concepts defined. Civil rights are those legal rights bestowed on citizens within the boundaries of the state.

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heroines of civil rights

Heroines of Civil Rights

Who are these women?

Why do you NOT know their names?

concepts defined
Concepts defined

Civil rights are those legal rights bestowed on citizens within the boundaries of the state.

What types of legal rights were denied African Americans and women and how did they gain those rights?

heritage of civil rights
Heritage of Civil Rights

Ida B. Wells fought the racial violence of lynching through

journalism, public speaking and organizing

slide4

Mary Church Terrell fought for legal equality by personal protests to presidents and by organizing the NACW and the NAACP

slide5

Black women understood there could be no legal equality without social and economic equity so they developed community agencies and social settlements

Jane Hunter

women s leadership in the movement for civil rights
Women’s Leadership in the Movement for Civil Rights

1954 Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education, Topeka, Kansas

established that separate was NOT equal in public school education

Constance Baker Motley completed the research for the argument

Linda Brown

women pushed for implementation
Women pushed for implementation

Daisy Bates, head of the Arkansas NAACP, led the fight to integrate Little Rock’s Central High using nine young teenagers as change agents

Elizabeth Eckford, Thelma Mothershed, Minniejean Brown, Gloria Ray, Melba Patillo, Carlotta Walls

slide8

6 year-old Ruby Bridges was one of four children to integrate the public schools in New Orleans in 1960. Her escort into school was memorialized by the famous cover by Norman Rockwell

“The Problem We All Live With”

slide9

15-year-old Dorothy Counts integrated Harding High School in Charlotte, NC.

She had to leave due to threats against her life.

integration of state universities
Integration of State Universities

Autherine Lucy integrated the University of Alabama in 1956 only to be expelled “for her own safety”

slide11

Charlayne Hunter (Gault) entered the University

of Georgia in 1961 following a court order

slide12

Constance Baker Motley won James Meredith entrance into the University of Mississippi in 1962

Viviane Malone confronted Governor George Wallace to enter the University of Alabama in 1963

desegregation of public accommodations
Desegregation of Public Accommodations

Montgomery Bus Boycott Organizers and Icons

Jo Ann Robinson’s Women’s Political Council organized the initial boycott

The arrest of Rosa Parks became the basis of the NAACP lawsuit that overturned segregation on the public bus system

they walked to freedom
They Walked to Freedom

Coretta Scott King

their preparation for activism
Their Preparation for Activism

Training at Highlander Folk School (TN)

brought the races together providing training in social justice and in the tactics of resistance

Septima Clark and Rosa Parks at Highlander

slide16

Collaborative organizers in the community

the church

the schools

the YWCA

the club movement (NACW 1896-)

supporters for fraternal orders and unions

  • Founders and national organizers in racial advancement organizations

NAACP 1909-

NUL 1910-

NCNW 1935-

case studies in activism ella baker and septima clark
Case Studies in Activism: Ella Baker and Septima Clark
  • Family background of Ella Baker
    • Grandparents owned land they had worked as slaves---grandmother refused to marry master’s light-skinned choice
    • Grandfather (dark) Baptist minister –pride and service. Took Ella around to community
  • Educational preparation
    • Shaw University studied sociology
    • New School for Social Research in New York City
slide18

“Strong people don’t need strong leaders.”

  • A social critic working within system
    • As a journalist—Bronx Slave Market
    • As organizer/director Young Negroes’ Cooperative League
    • Field secretary to National Organizer NAACP
    • Organized In Freedom, northern support for MBB

Participated in creation of SCLC and became its first national organizer

slide19

Family background of Septima Clark

Mother Haitian upbringing: tough, racial pride

Father (slave): devout Christian, compassionate

  • Educational preparation
    • Graduated Avery Institute and became teacher on St. Johns Island
    • Graduate work at Columbia University and Atlanta University (W. E. B. Du Bois)
    • Masters from Hampton Institute
  • Worked for equity issues
    • Black teacher salaries and right to administration—joined NAACP
    • YWCA collaboration for recreational opportunities
slide20

Initiator of Citizenship Schools

    • Emerged from Highlander work 1955
    • Literacy was basis of voter registration 1956
    • Membership in NAACP=termination of job
    • Director of Workshops & fundraiser for Highlander
    • SCLC takes program over (Baker advice) 1959

becomes Mother Conscience led by

philosophy: Literacy and Liberation

go hand-in-hand

recognition of potential leaders
Recognition of potential leaders
  • Student leaders from sit-in movement (1960)

Diane Nash from the Nashville sit-in movement

Diane Nash trained for activism while a student at Fisk University

slide22

Bernice Johnson Reagon became active as a student at Albany State College

Eleanor Holmes Norton became active as a student at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, OH

Norton, Baker, and Hamer

slide24

These students called to Shaw University by Ella Baker during Spring break Baker=Fundi

  • The result was a new activist organization: SNCC Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
  • New campaign:

Freedom Rides 1961

force implementation of interstate commerce directive to desegregate interstate transportation

slide25

1961 Freedom Rides routed at Birmingham

Freedom Rides carried on by SNCC’s Diane Nash with female participation and resulted in change of federal enforcement rules on interstate travel

slide26

Birmingham: women were integral participants

They sacrificed for desegregation

march on washington august 1963
March on Washington: August 1963
  • Planners included NCNW
  • Planners did not want younger leaders included---women insisted and students threatened protest
  • Women ignored—not one speaker (yet seated in “good seats” for media opportunity and Mahalia Jackson sang)

Dorothy Height

voter education project
Voter Education Project
  • COFO---Mississippi
  • Freedom Summer 1964

tactic and impact

Freedom Schools

  • MFDP
    • Proof of interest in voting
    • Influence on Democratic National Convention

Civil Rights Summit 1964

recognition of potential grassroots leaders
Recognition of Potential Grassroots Leaders
  • Fannie Lou Hamer
    • 70% disfranchised
    • Volunteered to register
    • Lost job
    • Beaten
    • Commitment unwavering
  • Victoria Gray
  • Annie Devine
slide30

Addressing the system: Attempt to get the MFDP seated at the Democratic National Convention

Annie Devine, Victoria Gray and Fannie Lou Hamer

slide31

Refused compromise of 2 seats at large

  • Representation to Democratic Conventions thereafter reflective of population
  • Returned to continue registering voters and developing community

Unita Blackwell, mayor

Unita Blackwell, activist

slide33

Pauli Murray

  • 1966 Founding of National Organization for Women

Shirley Chisholm

activist leaders
Activist leaders
  • Marian Wright (Edelman) becomes first African American woman admitted to the bar in Mississippi (defended Head Start)
    • Becomes advocate for poor
    • Founder of Children’s Defense Fund
activism produced institutional change
Activism produced institutional change
  • 1964 Civil Rights Act Title VII

discrimination (sexual harassment)

  • 1965 Voting Rights Act

First African American Congresswoman

First elected from South

Anita Hill

First Keynote Speaker

Eleanor Holmes Norton, EEOC

Rep. District of Columbia in Congress

new roles
New Roles
  • Ambassador (1965) and Cabinet (1977)
  • Episcopal priest (1988)
  • Astronaut (1988)

Patricia Harris

Barbara Harris

Mae Jemison

heroines of civil rights38

Heroines of Civil Rights

Why do you NOT know their names?

Who are these women?

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