Civil Rights Leaders African Americans

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Booker T Washington

  • More pragmatic approach; demands for CR would be put on hold and a longer term strategy of developing and strengthening their own community would be at the forefront.
  • Set up Tuskegee Institute in 1881; taught discipline, he expeceted others to follow his example. Cleanliness, thrift, punctuality, sobriety and hard work would be notable features of Tuskegee.
  • He argue that the black man should get the skills first before voting etc.
  • Skills taught were very limited, emphasis on literacy and numeracy and practical skills, rather than more theoretical, intellectual accomplishments
  • He did not think that blacks were only capable of practical work, he thought this should be a starting point; foundation base for african americans.
  • 'Atlanta Speech' 1895 - Emphasis should be on education and economic opportunity rather than agitating for social equality and voting rights.  He thought  that they had been thrust into position of authority and given a political role before they were ready. Critics felt remarks like this handed propaganda victory to white racists. The speech was known as the 'Alanta Compromise'.
  • The absence of any other outstanding black figure at this time, the continuing success of Tuskegee paved the ways for Washington's pre-eminence.
  • Tried to get Roosevelt to campaign against lynching- failed but still shows attempt.
  • Washington organised Negro Business League 1900- black capitalism.
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W.E.B Dubois

  • Came to regard Washington's views as limited and even dangerous for the future development of the black race.
  • He was concerned that Washington's approach seemed to have nothing to say about the disastrous developments of segregation and the loss of franchise in his published book 'The Souls of Black Folk' 1903
  • First black recipient of a history degree from Harvard University- intellectual.
  • Du Bois became director of publicity and research for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, (NAACP) founded in 1909.
  • The legal arm of the NAACP led the campaign to end Jim Crow segregation altogether, but its first target would be inequality in education. 
  • Founded Niagra movement (1905)- work for civil rights and political equality
  • Establishment of NAACP  which landed legal suits & produced propoganda to help blacks
  • Edited crisis (NAACP magazine) - articles against lynching - forced to resign
  • Impressed by Marxism in soviet union
  • Worked  for NAACP until forced to resign
  • Pro -USSR anti USA in cold War - passport confiscated
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Marcus Garvey (1917-1925)

  • Founded UNIA (Universal Negro Improvement Assosiation) - swelled after WWI to 500,000 members of blacks frustrated by progress (way above NAACP)
  • Black's taking control of own affairs
    • Black Eagle star Steamship
    • Military style leadership
    • Born in Jamaica
    • Eventually Deoprted
    • Believed God was black
    • Advocated self-help, armed self-defence & seperation of races
    • Appealed to racial pride
    • 'Back to Africa' - unrealistic goal as he assumed majority of black people wanted to flee to Africa when this was not the case which frightened & alienated many blacks
    • Other leaders jealous of his appeal to black w/c - often lighter skinned resented his claims of the 'blacker the better' - Du Bois called 'little, fat black man' and 'Most dangerous enemy of the ***** race- lightskinned doctor said UNIA stood for 'Ugliest Negro in America) - Randolph called 'jamaican JAckass'
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MLK

1955 - Montgomery Bus Boycott - Head of  MIA and key figure

1963 - Birmingham protest - America's worst big city - would produce white violence that won national sympathy - 1000 marched downtown -MLF arrested JFK intervened - police attacked peaceful black's - US witnessed

1963 - I have a dream speech - March On Washington

  • Freedom rides
  • Peaceful
  • Desegregation & political rights
  • Views later changed especially when he visited Chicago, he realised that it's easier to change legal laws but not social, still De Jure segregation was visible in the north.
  • Founded the SCLC in 1857

He had been critisised for his slow approach, many young African Americans felt that his approach was not making great progress. 

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Malcom X (1960 - 65)

  • Member of Nation of Islam (NOI) - Separate state from whites.
  • Was told in school to forget being a lwayer as it wasn't a realistic goal
  • Changed surname to X as previous surname was his 'slave' surname
  • Violent ( self-defense) - Critical of MLK non violence
  • Economic and Social rights
  • Wrote in a journal
  • Gave Speeches
  • Black superiority 'you're better than the white man!'
  • Views changed later when he travelled around the world to talk to Civil Rights leaders, he relaised the racial issue was everywhere and that the only way to fight it would be to cooperate with other people from different backgrounds.
  • Assasinated by NOI (Nation of Islam)
  • Encourage critical thinking in  race problems
  • Put forward extremist position to make King's demand more acceptable to white population
  • Drew attention to dreadful conditions in Ghettos
  • Influenced the Black Power movement when he was assassinated.
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Jesse Jackson

  • Civil rights leader and two-time Democratic presidential candidate Jesse Jackson (1941–) became one of the most influential African-Americans of the late 20th century.
  • He rose to prominence working within Martin Luther King Jr.'s Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) and was at the Memphis hotel with King when he was assassinated.
  • Through PUSH, the organization he founded in 1971, Jackson pressed for broader employment opportunities for African-Americans.
  • During the 1980s and 1990s he negotiated the release of dozens of international hostages and prisoners.
  • In his 1984 and 1988 presidential campaigns, Jackson won 16 state contests and millions of votes, making him the first viable African-American candidate for president.
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