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Civil Rights Movement Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

The Legacy Museum shows visitors elements of America’s long history of racial injustice – slavery, lynching, segregation, police killings of Black teens and the societal addiction to putting Black people behind bars.

‘Truth-telling has to happen’: the museum of America’s racist history

By Reparations

The Legacy Museum, opening in October, lands at a time when racial violence is again on the rise and critical race theory is being used to prevent America’s racist past being taught in schools. By Ed Pilkington, The Guardian — A 30ft wave crashes over your head as you enter the museum, dragging you instantly down into the roiling waters. The waves keep coming at you in gunmetal grey surges,…

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Participants in a “Freedom Friday March” in Washington, D.C.

The Party of Lincoln Is Now the Party of Jim Crow

By Commentaries/Opinions

Not a single House Republican voted for the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. By John Nichols, The Nation — “Old battles have become new again,” said US Representative Terri Sewell, of Alabama, as she introduced the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act for Tuesday’s essential vote in the House. And even as the old battles are being fought anew, the old battle lines have changed as well. The Republican Party, which was…

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Educator and civil rights activist Robert "Bob" Moses

3 Bob Moses Civil Rights Quotes

By Black World History

Born January 23, 1935 in Harlem, New York, Robert Parris Moses was an American educator and civil rights activist, known for his work as a leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee on voter education and registration in Mississippi during the Civil Rights Movement, and his co-founding of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. On July 25, 2021, Bob Moses has joined the ancestors. In his memory we’re sharing a few…

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Bob Moses

Bob Moses, Civil Rights legend and mathematician, dead 86

By News & Current Affairs

By Herb Boyd — The late James Forman, in his book The Making of Black Revolutionaries, signaled the arrival of Bob Moses to the civil rights movement. “A New York school teacher, Moses had quit his job and begun to work full time in Mississippi voter registration. He did not attend the workshop [preparing volunteers] but his ideas would soon feed into the mainstream of Southern students thinking about what forms…

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Hilton Head, South Carolina, 1862.

The Demand of Freedom

By Editors' Choice

The United States’ first civil rights movement. By Kellie Carter Jackson — Racism is not regional. I often hear people refer to it as though it were trapped in the South. White Northerners who are appalled by the blatant racism around them will say things like “This isn’t Mississippi” or “Take that attitude back to Alabama.” But whether white Northerners like to recognize it or not, slavery was in every…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

Reaffirming Our Africanness and Radical Tradition, 1960s: Liberation’s Coming From a Black Thing

By Commentaries/Opinions, Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — Part II. It was Min. Malcolm X who taught us to cultivate a world-encompassing consciousness, not only as pan-Africanists committed to the liberation of Africans everywhere, but also as part of the worldwide revolution and liberation struggle going on and redrawing the map of history. He taught that we, as African people, were part of that global struggle of the oppressed against oppressors. And he…

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Will white people’s participation in Black Lives Matter protests yield real change?

After the civil rights era, white Americans failed to support systemic change to end racism. Will they now?

By Commentaries/Opinions

In principle, white Americans support efforts to end racism. But in practice, they have long been unwilling to support the fundamental change needed to do that. Will this year’s events change that? By Candis Watts Smith — The first wave of the Black Lives Matter movement, which crested after the 2014 police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, had the support of less than half of white Americans. Given that Americans tend…

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A demonstrator next to a fence bearing names of black people killed by police, Washington DC, June 2020.

America’s ‘Untouchables’: the Silent Power of the Caste System

By Editors' Choice

More than a century and a half before the American Revolution, a human hierarchy had evolved on the soil of the future United States. To comprehend the current upheavals one must understand the human pyramid encrypted into us all: the caste system. By Isabel Wilkerson, The Guardian — In the winter of 1959, after leading the Montgomery bus boycott that arose from the arrest of Rosa Parks and before the trials and…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

Lifting Up Lowery, Vivian and Lewis: Living the Legacy, Freeing the People

By Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — The recent passing of Rev. Joseph Lowery (October 6, 1921 – March 27, 2020), Rev. Cordy Tindell (C.T.) Vivian (July 30, 1924 – July 17, 2020, and Rep. John Lewis (February 21, 1940 – July 17, 2020), three major leaders of the civil rights phase of the Black Freedom Movement, rightfully causes and encourages us to lift them up and to recount and reflect on…

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"Why would $300 keep me from voting?" asks Robert Peoples of Mobile, Alabama.

A poll tax by any other name

By Editors' Choice

“Why would $300 keep me from voting?” asks Robert Peoples of Mobile, Alabama. By Dana Sweeney, Facing South — Robert Peoples remembers when African Americans won the right to vote in Alabama back in 1965. Though he was only 13 years old at the time, he had grown up in Mobile with a front-row seat to history as it was forged by a generation of ordinary Alabamians who won extraordinary…

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Congressman John Lewis — SNCC organizers, Greenwood.

The Other John Lewis I Will Always Remember

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Earl Ofari Hutchinson — The instant the news flashed that Congressman John Lewis died the expected and much deserved avalanche of tributes poured in from all corners. Trump’s tribute was in that avalanche. The tributes all pretty much followed the same pattern. Lewis was praised as a civil rights icon, courageous, unremitting, and a historic example of how a life devoted to civil rights can result in monumental changes…

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John R. Lewis, a civil rights titan and a formidable member of Congress for three decades, died at the age of 80 on July 17.

John Lewis, front-line civil rights leader and eminence of Capitol Hill, dies at 80

By News & Current Affairs

By Laurence I. Barrett, The Washington Post — John Lewis, a civil rights leader who preached nonviolence while enduring beatings and jailings during seminal front-line confrontations of the 1960s and later spent more than three decades in Congress defending the crucial gains he had helped achieve for people of color, has died. He was 80. His death was announced in statements from his family and from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi…

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