Protest at Selma
Author: David J. Garrow
Publisher: Open Road Media
A thorough and insightful account of the historic 1965 civil rights protest at Selma, Alabama, from the author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning biography Bearing the Cross Vivid descriptions of violence and courageous acts fill David Garrow’s account of the momentous 1965 protest at Selma, Alabama, in which the author illuminates the role of Martin Luther King Jr. in organizing the demonstrations that led to the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965. Beyond a mere narration of events, Garrow provides an in-depth look at the political strategy of King and of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He explains how King’s awareness of media coverage of the protests—especially reports of white violence against peaceful African American protestors—would elicit sympathy for the cause and lead to dramatic legislative change. Garrow’s analysis of these tactics and of the news reports surrounding these events provides a deeper understanding of how civil rights activists utilized a nonviolent approach to achieve success in the face of great opposition and ultimately effected monumental political change.
Protest at Selma
Author: David J. Garrow
Publisher: Yale University Press
This work focuses on the federal voting rights legislation and the civil rights protests in Selma and Birmingham, Alabama, in 1965. The emphasis is placed on Martin Luther King, Jr., as leader of SCLC.
On March 7, 1965, a peaceful voting rights demonstration in Selma, Alabama, was met with an unprovoked attack of shocking violence that riveted the attention of the nation. In the days and weeks following "Bloody Sunday," the demonstrators would not be deterred, and thousands of others joined their cause, culminating in the successful march from Selma to Montgomery. The protest marches led directly to the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a major piece of legislation, which, ninety-five years after the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment, made the practice of the right to vote available to all Americans, irrespective of race. From Selma to Montgomery chronicles the marches, placing them in the context of the long Civil Rights Movement, and considers the legacy of the Act, drawing parallels with contemporary issues of enfranchisement. In five concise chapters bolstered by primary documents including civil rights legislation, speeches, and news coverage, Combs introduces the Civil Rights Movement to undergraduates through the courageous actions of the freedom marchers.
Selma’s Bloody Sunday
Author: Robert A. Pratt
Publisher: JHU Press
"One can point to more than a few 'critical moments' in the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Even so, few incidents so starkly etched the just-treatment claims of the struggle and the raw brutality of the forces arrayed against its protagonists as did the attempted marches from Selma to the state capital in Montgomery, Alabama, in the spring of 1965. ... In March of that year the full force of the state of Alabama--state troopers with nightsticks, some mounted--fell on unarmed protestors as they crossed a bridge leading out of Selma, beating them and continuing to flail at them most of the way back into town. This ... event, much of it caught on television tape, helped the president and fellow Democrats decide to make enforcement of voting rights in the South the subject of special federal legislation. Pratt makes 'Bloody Sunday' the focus of a short book on the civil rights as voting rights movement, its background, and the continuing controversy over federal laws that benefit blacks specifically and impose sanctions on states with histories of impeding voting rights for all citizens"--
This text traces the history of the civil rights movement in the years following World War II, to the present day. Issues discussed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights of 1965, and the Northern Ireland ghetto's.
Lillian's Right to Vote
Author: Jonah Winter
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade
An elderly African American woman, en route to vote, remembers her family’s tumultuous voting history in this picture book publishing in time for the fiftieth anniversary of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. As Lillian, a one-hundred-year-old African American woman, makes a “long haul up a steep hill” to her polling place, she sees more than trees and sky—she sees her family’s history. She sees the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment and her great-grandfather voting for the first time. She sees her parents trying to register to vote. And she sees herself marching in a protest from Selma to Montgomery. Veteran bestselling picture-book author Jonah Winter and Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner Shane W. Evans vividly recall America’s battle for civil rights in this lyrical, poignant account of one woman’s fierce determination to make it up the hill and make her voice heard. "Moving.... Stirs up a potent mixture of grief, anger, and pride at the history of black people’s fight for access to the ballot box." —The New York Times "A much-needed picture book that will enlighten a new generation about battles won and a timely call to uphold these victories in the present." —Kirkus Reviews, Starred "A valuable introduction to and overview of the civil rights movement." —Publishers Weekly, Starred "An important book that will give you goose bumps." —Booklist, Starred From the Hardcover edition.
The author of Bearing the Cross, the Pulitzer Prize–winning biography of Martin Luther King Jr., exposes the government’s massive surveillance campaign against the civil rights leader When US attorney general Robert F. Kennedy authorized a wiretap of Martin Luther King Jr.’s phones by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, he set in motion one of the most invasive surveillance operations in American history. Sparked by informant reports of King’s alleged involvement with communists, the FBI amassed a trove of information on the civil rights leader. Their findings failed to turn up any evidence of communist influence, but they did expose sensitive aspects of King’s personal life that the FBI went on to use in its attempts to mar his public image. Based on meticulous research into the agency’s surveillance records, historian David Garrow illustrates how the FBI followed King’s movements throughout the country, bugging his hotel rooms and tapping his phones wherever he went, in an obsessive quest to destroy his growing influence. Garrow uncovers the voyeurism and racism within J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI while unmasking Hoover’s personal desire to destroy King. The spying only intensified once King publicly denounced the Vietnam War, and the FBI continued to surveil him until his death. The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr. clearly demonstrates an unprecedented abuse of power by the FBI and the government as a whole.
Jimmie Lee & James
Author: Steve Fiffer, Ardar Cohen
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
In the early months of 1965, the killings of two civil rights activists inspired the Selma-to-Montgomery marches, which became the driving force behind the passage of the Voting Rights Act. This is their story. “Bloody Sunday”—March 7, 1965—was a pivotal moment in the civil rights struggle. The national outrage generated by scenes of Alabama state troopers attacking peaceful demonstrators fueled the drive toward the passage of the Voting Rights Acts later that year. But why were hundreds of activists marching from Selma to Montgomery that afternoon? Days earlier, during the crackdown on another protest in nearby Marion, a state trooper, claiming self-defense, shot Jimmie Lee Jackson, a 26-year-old unarmed deacon and civil rights protester. Jackson’s subsequent death spurred local civil rights leaders to make the march to Montgomery; when that day also ended in violence, the call went out to activists across the nation to join in the next attempt. One of the many who came down was a minister from Boston named James Reeb. Shortly after his arrival, he was attacked in the street by racist vigilantes, eventually dying of his injuries. Lyndon Johnson evoked Reeb’s memory when he brought his voting rights legislation to Congress, and the national outcry over the brutal killings ensured its passage. Most histories of the civil rights movement note these two deaths briefly, before moving on to the more famous moments. Jimmie Lee and James is the first book to give readers a deeper understanding of the events that galvanized an already-strong civil rights movement to one of its greatest successes, along with the herculean efforts to bring the killers of these two men to justice—a quest that would last more than four decades.
On June 25, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Shelby County v. Holder, invalidating a key provision of voting rights law. The decision—the culmination of an eight-year battle over the power of Congress to regulate state conduct of elections—marked the closing of a chapter in American politics. That chapter had opened a century earlier in the case of Guinn v. United States, which ushered in national efforts to knock down racial barriers to the ballot. A detailed and timely history, The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act analyzes changing legislation and the future of voting rights in the United States. In tracing the development of the Voting Rights Act from its inception, Charles S. Bullock III, Ronald Keith Gaddie, and Justin J. Wert begin by exploring the political and legal aspects of the Jim Crow electoral regime. Detailing both the subsequent struggle to enact the law and its impact, they explain why the Voting Rights Act was necessary. The authors draw on court cases and election data to bring their discussion to the present with an examination of the 2006 revision and renewal of the act, and its role in shaping the southern political environment in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, when Barack Obama was chosen. Bullock, Gaddie, and Wert go on to closely evaluate the 2013 Shelby County decision, describing how the ideological makeup of the Supreme Court created an appellate environment that made the act ripe for a challenge. Rigorous in its scholarship and thoroughly readable, this book goes beyond history and analysis to provide compelling and much-needed insight into the ways voting rights legislation has shaped the United States. The Rise and Fall of the Voting Rights Act illuminates the historical roots—and the human consequences—of a critical chapter in U.S. legal history.
Author: J. Mills Thornton
Publisher: University of Alabama Press
In a definitive overview of the political cultures that existed in Montgomery, Birmingham, and Selma, the author takes a new look at the civil rights movement by comparing the social, economic, and political factors of the three cities that led the movement in the 1950s and 1960s.
The Voting Rights Act
Author: Richard M. Valelly
Publisher: Cq Press
''''When President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act into law in 1965, he explained that '[t]his act flows from a clear and simple wrong...Millions of Americans are denied the vote because of their color. This law will ensure them the right to vote. The wrong is one which no American, in his heart, can justify.' ''''Now, in the fortieth anniversary year of its passage, readers can learn about the history, impact, and significance of this landmark event through the dynamic pairing of essays and primary source documents that define CQ Press's Landmark Events in U.S. History Series. The fifth volume in this award-winning collection, The Voting Rights Act, explores the origin, development, and consequences of this landmark legislation, and shows how its legacy continues to shape many aspects of U.S. government and politics.''Eminent scholars who have particular expertise in the subjects addressed write the insightful essays contained in this volume. Following these essays are related primary sources from the late nineteenth century to the present that add a dynamic 'you are there' immediacy to the coverage. Readers will find excerpts from relevant Supreme Court cases, key civil rights speeches and legal documents, and excerpts from speeches, hearings, and other documents related to the Voting Rights Act. Each document includes helpful head notes that give valuable context.''''As with all volumes in the Landmark Events in U.S. History Series, The Voting Rights Act presents a thorough and balanced treatment of a major historical event. The uniquely engaging approach will bring to life the history and significance of the Voting Rights Act for a wide range of library patrons, including high school and college-level students, as well as general readers and researchers looking for coverage of major U.S. events that is as interesting as it is informative.''''
At Canaan's Edge
Author: Taylor Branch
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
At Canaan's Edge concludes America in the King Years, a three-volume history that will endure as a masterpiece of storytelling on American race, violence, and democracy. Pulitzer Prize-winner and bestselling author Taylor Branch makes clear in this magisterial account of the civil rights movement that Martin Luther King, Jr., earned a place next to James Madison and Abraham Lincoln in the pantheon of American history. In At Canaan's Edge, King and his movement stand at the zenith of America's defining story, one decade into an epic struggle for the promises of democracy. Branch opens with the authorities' violent suppression of a voting-rights march in Alabama on March 7, 1965. The quest to cross Selma's Edmund Pettus Bridge engages the conscience of the world, strains the civil rights coalition, and embroils King in negotiations with all three branches of the U.S. government. The marches from Selma coincide with the first landing of large U.S. combat units in South Vietnam. The escalation of the war severs the cooperation of King and President Lyndon Johnson after a collaboration that culminated in the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act. After Selma, young pilgrims led by Stokely Carmichael take the movement into adjacent Lowndes County, Alabama, where not a single member of the black majority has tried to vote in the twentieth century. Freedom workers are murdered, but sharecroppers learn to read, dare to vote, and build their own political party. Carmichael leaves in frustration to proclaim his famous black power doctrine, taking the local panther ballot symbol to become an icon of armed rebellion. Also after Selma, King takes nonviolence into Northern urban ghettoes. Integrated marches through Chicago expose hatreds and fears no less virulent than the Mississippi Klan's, but King's 1966 settlement with Mayor Richard Daley does not gain the kind of national response that generated victories from Birmingham and Selma. We watch King overrule his advisers to bring all his eloquence into dissent from the Vietnam War. We watch King make an embattled decision to concentrate his next campaign on a positive compact to address poverty. We reach Memphis, the garbage workers' strike, and King's assassination. Parting the Waters provided an unsurpassed portrait of King's rise to greatness, beginning with the 1955 Montgomery bus boycott and ending with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963. In Pillar of Fire, theologians and college students braved the dangerous Mississippi Freedom Summer of 1964 as Malcolm X raised a militant new voice for racial separatism. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 outlawed segregation by race and mandated equal opportunity for women. From the pinnacle of winning the Nobel Peace Prize, King willed himself back to "the valley" of jail in his daunting Selma campaign. At Canaan's Edge portrays King at the height of his moral power even as his worldly power is waning. It shows why his fidelity to freedom and nonviolence makes him a defining figure long beyond his brilliant life and violent end.
The Shadow of Selma
Author: Joe Street, Henry Knight Lozano, Henry Knight
The Shadow of Selma is the first thorough analysis of the historical importance and legacy of the 1965 campaign for civil rights in Selma, Alabama, and the consequent Voting Rights Act, which is among the most important pieces of legislation in American history. It considers the historical memory of the Selma campaign, particularly examining the competing narratives of Selma in popular media and cinema.
April 4, 1968
Author: Michael Eric Dyson
Publisher: Civitas Books
On April 4, 1968, at 6:01 p.m., while he was standing on a balcony at a Memphis hotel, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and fatally wounded. Only hours earlier King ended his final speech with the words, “I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight, that we as a people will get to the Promised Land.” Acclaimed public intellectual and best-selling author Michael Eric Dyson examines how King fought, and faced, his own death, and how America can draw on his legacy in the twenty-first century. April 4, 1968 celebrates the leadership of Dr. King, and challenges America to renew its commitment to his vision.