Divided union notes

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  • Created on: 15-05-14 18:39
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Divided Union
- Many Anti-Communist films produced (e.g. "The Iron Curtain," "I Married a Communist")
- Libraries checked for anti-American Communist-written books which were removed from
circulation (=censorship)
- McCarthy disliked Eisenhower's choice of ambassador to USSR and they were political rivals
they fell out
- Effects of McCarthyism: anti-Communist foreign policy, climate of fear (hard to overcome),
anyone seeking to change USA seen as Communist, long-surviving Communist hatred, `pinko' `red'
and `commie' all synonyms of unpatriotic
Civil rights
- Before Bus Boycott, black passengers had to follow driver's instructions, give up seats for
white passengers, weren't allowed to sit at the front and couldn't sit next to white
passengers, even if there was an empty seat
- MLK was a minister at a Montgomery church inspired by Gandhi
- What people learnt from the boycotts: MLK was a good leader, publicity was important, blacks
could organise themselves, and peace, unity and solidarity would win
- CORE and NAACP organised `direct action' events (e.g. Sit-ins, boycotts, sit down
- JFK had won presidency by narrow margin from black vote civil rights important to him.
Despite being scared of losing support of Dixiecrats (in his own party) who opposed civil rights
so limited his contribution, he did the following:
- New Frontier (part of which was to achieve equality) put forward in inauguration speech
- Appointed black Americans as federal judges and into administration
- Appointed brother as Attorney General to enforce civil rights laws
- Threatened legal action when Louisiana refused to fund integrated schools
- Sent 23,000 government troops to protect James Meredith
- Civil rights progress slow, widely felt that MLK's methods wouldn't bring equality more
radical groups emerged in 1960s
- Malcolm X (key figure in Nation of Islam) called March on Washington `farce on Washington' as
he believed it would bring nothing and couldn't grasp why black impressed by `demonstrations
run by whites' in front of statue of Abraham Lincoln (long dead president who ended slavery).
Believed violence justified, not just for self-defence, unlike MLK
- Stokely Carmichael (SNCC leader) wanted blacks to control own lives, have their own political
force and pride in their appearance. Refused white help, saw Vietnam war as illegal/weapons
like napalm/Agent Orange (defoliant which ruined wildlife)/draft as corrupt as more blacks
drafted than whites
Student protests
- Reasons:
- Civil rights (racial and sexual equality)
- Popular music, recreational drugs and `free love'
- Vietnam, nuclear weapons, international developments and death of key reformers (JFK,
MLK, Malcolm X)
- Generational gap
- University issues (wanted greater say in running of it)
- In 1950s, frustration made teens rebellious, causing heavy drinking, gang formation and new
music (e.g. Elvis' rock n' roll) which inspired more rebellion. Youth wanted more freedom and didn't
want boring life set out before them (partially because distanced from older generation)

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Bob Dylan became symbol of change as he sang about nuclear war, racism. Beates and Jimi
Hendrix also had impacts with songs about free love, drugs and peace
- Death of JFK disillusioned youth as New Frontier programme had captured support. Along with
Malcolm X's and MLK's deaths, students disillusioned with politics
- Vietnam war started as USA wanted to stop Communist North from invading South. Divided US
society as televised.…read more


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