AP is a registered trademark of the College Board, Which was not involved in the production of, and does not endorse, this civil rights act of 1964 essay. The New Negro and the Black Image: From Booker T.
Freedom’s Story is made possible by a grant from the Wachovia Foundation. The civil rights movement did not end in 1968. It shifted to a new phase. 1968 struggle where an assassin stole his life. The shock, grief, and rage that ensued, in the conventional account, become the veritable end of the movement. All that followed is treated as incidental to, if not decline or detour from, the glory days of struggle. But that endpoint obscures far more than it illuminates, a new generation of scholarship has revealed.
King, as the Memphis sanitation workers’ strike Martin had been supporting achieved a landmark victory weeks after his death. It is now clear that A. King was more prescient than the pundits from whom first-wave historians took their cue. What journalists took as the end of the movement marked, instead, a shift to a new phase in which the reforms the movement won and the ongoing obstacles it confronted created a new and more complex terrain of struggle. The civil rights legislation of the mid-1960s set the stage for the real work of equality in jobs, education, politics, and the military. Using the Act’s Title VII, which outlawed employment discrimination, hundreds of thousands of workers ended their exclusion from higher-paying jobs and stopped discrimination in benefits, promotions, and day-to-day treatment.
While some fought discrimination using the Civil Rights Act, other black workers organized to improve conditions in their existing jobs, as the Memphis sanitation strike inspired a vast wave of union organizing. Led by black municipal and hospital workers, the public sector became the best organized part of the U. There, African American men and women, especially, achieved their greatest income and promotion gains. African American voters and candidates as never before.
In the South, the impact was stunning, as newly enfranchised black voters partnered with liberal and moderate whites to elect more African Americans than the region had seen since Reconstruction. In the cities of the North and West, black communities gained representation as never before. Nationally, forty-three black candidates won election as mayor in 1973, a number that quintupled over the next fifteen years. As African Americans gained new access to white-dominated institutions, the freedom struggle moved inside from the streets. On college campuses, black students fought for and won the creation of Afro-American Studies programs and financial aid policies that would allow children of lower-income families to get college educations.