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Unit 7. Social Movements of the 1960s. Contents:. 1. Background 2. Definition 3. The Civil Rights Movement 4. The Youth Movement / Anti-War Movement 5. Women’s Liberation Movement. Background. ★ Greensboro Sit-in

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Unit 7

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Unit 7

Social Movements of the 1960s

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  • 1. Background

  • 2. Definition

  • 3. The Civil Rights Movement

  • 4. The Youth Movement / Anti-War Movement

  • 5. Women’s Liberation Movement

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★Greensboro Sit-in

On February 1, 1960, 4 freshmen from a black college in Greensboro, North Carolina, sat down at a department lunch counter and ordered coffee. When refused, they continued to sit at the counter, openly defying the segregation law prevailing in the state.

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  • The next day, more students joined them. Thus began the civil rights movement, which spread from the south to the north.

  • Later, this quiet “sit-in” became the major nonviolent direct action tactics to be used by black civil rights activists.

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Protests continue outside the segregated Mayfair Cafeteria, Greensboro, 1960

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In Harlem and many other northern communities, Movement supporters picket Woolworths and other chain stores to support the southern sit-ins

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Rather than serve people of color, some lunch-counters close “in the interests of public safety.”

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Other cafes and lunch- counters call the cops to arrest Blacks for the crime of ordering a cup of coffee in defiance of the segregation laws

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  • 1960 - 1963Sit-ins, swim-ins, read-ins, pray-ins, marches, and other protests erupt across the South at segregated restaurants, swimming pools, libraries, churches...

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More than 1,000 students march in support of anti-segregation, sit-ins at downtown lunch counters

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Woolworth sit-in, Jackson, MS. May 28, 1963

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  • “This was the most violently attacked sit-in during the 1960s and is the most publicized. A huge mob gathered, with open police support while the three of us sat there for three hours. I was attacked with fists, brass knuckles and the broken portions of glass sugar containers, and was burned with cigarettes. I'm covered with blood and we were all covered by salt, sugar, mustard, and various other things.”

    ---written by the man in above photo

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★The civil rights movement, and the youth anti-war, and the women’s liberation movements had long roots in United States history.

→their slogans:

“We shall overcome!”

“Let it all hang out!”

“Hell, no, we won’t go.”

“Speak your heart without interruption.”

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--Why did the social movements begin?

  • Most white men were quite satisfied with their lives.

  • While some people (Afro-Americans, young people and women)were dissatisfied with their lives.

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★One professor argues that “a social movement is a type of behavior in which a large number of participants consciously attempt to change existing institutions and establish a new order of life.”

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--Two basic characteristics of all social movements: “structure”and “spontaneity”

--Other necessary parts of a social movement are:

1. a social base of people

2. a “message” or ideology

 3. the ability to spread the message and get more supporter

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The Civil Rights Movement

▶One of the most important social movements in the 1960s.

▶Rosa Parks’ spontaneous action in 1955 was believed to be the true beginning of the civil rights movement.

▶The black students’ sit-in at a department lunch counter in North Carolina touched off the nationwide civil rights movement.

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The Civil Rights Movement

--Montgomery Bus Boycott

  • At that time, Alabama law required that blacks sit at the back of the bus, and when asked, surrender their seats to whites.

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • In December 1955, Rosa Parks, a NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People)member in Montgomery Alabama, refused to give up her seat to a white man on a public bus.

  • Mrs. Parks was arrested.

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Rosa Parks having her fingerprints taken after her arrest on 1st December, 1955

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • Local black leaders decided to boycott the city’s bus system.

  • Black people in the city spontaneously began to boycott the bus system. The blacks, young and old, refused to ride on public buses and walked to work.

  • With the bus company near bankruptcy, and the aid of a 1956 Supreme Court decision, Montgomery blacks triumphed.

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The Civil Rights Movement

--organizations and changes

  • During the first half of the decade, civil rights organizations like SNCC(the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee), CORE (the Congress of Racial Equality), and SCLC(the Southern Christian Leadership Conference) struggled for racial integration by providing leadership, tactics, network and the people.

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • In the latter half of the decade, some black organizations changed their nonviolent tactics, and emphasized on more radical means to end discrimination and raised the self image of the blacks.

  • The civil rights movement produced such great leaders as Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X, who inspired a generation of both blacks and whites to devote their lives to fighting for racial equality in the U.S.

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The Civil Rights Movement

★Direct Action Tactics

--When the civil rights movement began, non-violent direct action tactics like “sit-ins” and “freedom rides”, voter registration.

--Later, anti-war activists added “teach-ins” on college campuses, to educate people about the war in Vietnam as well as protest marches and rallies and etc.

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The Civil Rights MovementThe Freedom Rides

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The Civil Rights Movement

The Freedom Rides

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • Organized by CORE, two integrated groups of Freedom Riders enter Alabama on May 14, 1961. One bus is ambushed and burned by a racist mob.

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • The Freedom Riders are arrested for violating local segregation laws. They are sentenced to State Prison, where they are beaten and abused.

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The Civil Rights Movement

voter registrationTeach-ins

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The Civil Rights Movement

★some leaders in the movement:

--Martin Luther King, Jr.

▶Martin Luther King, Jr., a Baptist minister, was the leader of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference during the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

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The Civil Rights Movement

▶To promote his philosophy of nonviolent protest against segregation and other kinds of social injustice, King organized a series of “marches”, including the March on Washington of August, 1963, when King delivered his famous “I have a Dream” speech.

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The Civil Rights Movement

▶As a civil rights leader, King worked not only to end racial discrimination and poverty, but also to raise the self image of the blacks.

▶Due to his strong belief in nonviolent peaceful protest, King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

▶He was assassinated in the city of Memphis in April 1968.

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The Civil Rights Movement

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The Civil Rights Movement

--Malcolm X

▶Malcolm X was an American Black Muslim minister and spoke in favor of black separatism and against nonviolence in fighting racial discrimination.

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The Civil Rights Movement

Malcolm X

Born May 19, 1925

North Omaha, Neb.

Died February 21, 1965

(aged 39)

New York, N.Y.

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The Civil Rights Movement

Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, March 26, 1964

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The Civil Rights Movement

--Stokeley Carmichael

▶Some of SNCC members thought they needed a strong leader rather than collective leadership.

▶In 1965, they elected a new chairman, Stokeley Carmichael who spoke about Black Power.

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The Civil Rights Movement

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The Civil Rights Movement

  • *The most notorious terrorist group against black civil rights workers in the South was known as Ku Klux Klan

  • *Those who worked in the civil rights movement included Negro leaders, black and white young people, and some professionals and some housewives.

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The Youth Movement

  • *Many young people were involved in the social movements of the 1960 because they resented traditional white male values in U.S. society.

  • --Free Speech Movement

  • --“counter culture”

  • --The Anti-War Movement

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The Youth Movement

★Free Speech Movement

  • Mario Savio, a student who had just returned from working with SNCC in the Mississippi Freedom Summer, took off his shoes and stood on top of the police car.

  • He demanded that the CORE worker be freed and the rules against free speech be changed.

  • The students sat around the car for 32 hours in spontaneous, nonviolent, direct action.

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The Youth Movement

  • Other students “sat-in” at the administration buildings and organized “Free University” classes.

  • The California governor called hundreds of police to the campus. 800 students were arrested.

  • Graduate students organized a strike and closed the university. The teachers and professors voted to change the rule that violate the 1st and 14th Amendments.

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The Youth Movement

  • The young people’s “Free Speech Movement” began with success.

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The Youth Movement

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The Youth Movement

★“counter culture”

  • The Counter Culture rejected capitalism and other American principles. They had morals different from taught by their parents. Some groups of youth tried to construct different ways of life.

  • Among them the most famous were the hippies. They sought new experience through dropping out, drugs.

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The Youth Movement

  • But it was music, rock music in particular, that became the chief vehicle for the counter cultural assault on traditional American society.

  • The counter culture exerted a great influence upon people’s attitudes toward social mores, marriage, career, and success.

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The Youth Movement

☀ hippies:

  • The Hippie subculture was originally a youth movement that began in the United States during the early 1960s and spread around the world.

  • Hippies sought to free themselves from societal restrictions, choose their own ways, and find new meanings in life.

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The Youth Movement

  • One expression of hippie independence from societal norms was found in their standard of dress and grooming, which served as a visual symbol of their respect for individual rights.

  • Hippies often chose brightly colored clothing, wore unusual styles and had long hair.

  • Much of hippie clothing was self-made in defiance of corporate culture, and hippies often purchased their clothes from flea markets and second-hand shops.

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  • Travel, domestic and international, was a prominent feature of hippie culture, becoming (in this communal process) an extension of friendship.

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The Youth Movement

★The Anti-War Movement (against the war in Vietnam)

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Women’s Liberation Movement

▶The women’s movement in the 1960s was started by three groups of women and an accident.

--1. a group of professional women who were appointed to a Commission on the Status of Women by President Kennedy in 1961.

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Women’s Liberation Movement

--2. white housewives and mothers who read Betty Friedan’s book, The Feminine Mystique, published in 1963.

--3. young activists in the civil rights and anti-war movements.

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Women’s Liberation Movement

--the accident was a word in the Civil Rights Act passed in 1964.

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Women’s Liberation Movement


--With the publication of The Feminine Mystique in 1963, Betty Friedan became the chief spokesperson of the Women’s Liberation Movement.

--In her book, she compared the American family, or the American society as a whole, to a “comfortable concentration camp”, where women were discriminated against and oppressed.

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Women’s Liberation Movement

--In 1966, she helped to found the National Organization for Women (NOW). A reform organization, NOW battled for “equal rights in partnership with men.”

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