Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 60s
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This paper deals with the US Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s - described by this author as the most important domestic social movement of the twentieth century. The writer then goes on to describe the ideas of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson, and looks at how the Civil Rights Movement successfully adopted the ideas of these two American philosophers.
From the Paper:"The Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s was, arguably, the most important domestic social movement of the twentieth century; at the very least, it was the most important social phenomenon to grip America since the close of the Civil War. Under the skillful leadership of Martin Luther King, Jr., the movement became famous for civil disobedience or the non-violent resistance to laws that perpetuated racial inequality and segregation. Civil rights activists, with the blessing of Dr. King, organized peaceful demonstrations, boycotts, voter-registration drives, marches, strikes and simply refused to obey laws they saw as wrong and unjust. Of course, an approach of this sort requires extraordinary courage and brings with it many risks - but, at the same time, the Civil Rights Movement acquired a moral grandeur and authority that made it very formidable (Brunner, sec.2). The next few pages will argue that, by pursuing civil disobedience, the Civil Rights Movement captured the essence of Henry David Thoreau's understanding of the concept. At the same time, by speaking the truth about the American condition, and by embracing a non-conformist approach designed to uproot institutionalized bigotry in the United States, the Civil Rights Movement echoed some of the principles laid down by Ralph Waldo Emerson in his famous essay, "Self-Reliance". With that in mind, the following paper will describe the ideas of Thoreau and Emerson, the Civil Rights Movement, and how the Civil Rights Movement successfully adopted the ideas of these two American philosophers. In the end, the movement benefited greatly from following the intellectual example of Henry David Thoreau and from following the demand of Emerson that people act as non-conformists in the pursuit of a great cause."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Brunner, Borgna. "Civil Rights Movement Heroes." Infoplease: All the Knowledge You Need. 2007. Pearson Education, Inc. 2 Aug. 2007 <http://www.infoplease.com/spot/bhmheroes1.html>
- Emerson, Ralph Waldo. "Self-Reliance." The Complete Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson. New York: Sully & Kleinteich, 1883. 47-88.
- Levy, Peter B. The Civil Rights Movement. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1998.
- Thoreau, Henry David. "Resistance to Civil Government (Civil Disobedience)." Henry David Thoreau: Representative Selections with Introduction, Bibliography and Notes. Ed. Bartholow B. Crawford. New York: American Book Company, 1934. 255-268.
- Tutu, Desmond. "A Force more Powerful: A Century of Non-Violent Conflict." Social Education, 64.5 (2000): 1+. Questia.com. 2 Aug. 2007 <http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5001123127>
Cite this Term Paper:
Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 60s (2008, June 27) Retrieved September 18, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/civil-rights-movement-of-the-1950s-and-60s-105039/
"Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 60s" 27 June 2008. Web. 18 September. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/civil-rights-movement-of-the-1950s-and-60s-105039/>