Thursday, April 25, 2013

Southern Poverty Law Center

Civil Rights Memorial, Library of Congress photo.

We've discusses the changes within the Civil Rights movement following the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and we saw many different groups organize with different ideas about how to advance the fight for equality.

The Civil Rights Memorial is located in Montgomery, Alabama, across the street from the Southern Poverty Law Center offices, an organization founded in 1971 and committed to "seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society." Look through their website to see the kinds of cases they handle and how they approach their work.

What does the phrase "civil rights" mean today? How is that similar to or different from what it meant in 1954?

Monday, April 22, 2013

Levittown, Long Island

Architect's rendering of a 1947 Cape Cod house built in Levittown, NY. Photo from the State Museum of Pennsylvania.

We tend to concentrate on the Civil Rights movement taking place in the South and emphasize events in Montgomery, Selma, and Birmingham, but northern states also practiced de facto and de jure segregation. Read this article from The New York Times on the 50th anniversary of the construction of Levittown, Long Island.

Think about the changes in urban areas after World War II and the ongoing struggle for civil rights nationally, considering the examples discussed in class. How does the history of Levittown change your perception or understanding of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s?