Civil Rights Movements

The appearance of the Black Power Movement, which lasted from 1966 to 1975, blown up and steadily eclipsed the aims of the Civil Rights Movement to embrace racial seemliness, economic and political independence, and lack of restrictions from white power. Discriminatory laws and violence in the racial sense directed to African Americans had started to flourish in the US by the last decade of the nineteenth century, a period sometimes referred to as the lowest point of American race affairs.

In many states, government officials had begun to call for or allow discrimination. NAACP used lawsuit and lobbying efforts to eliminate discrimination against African Americans before the Civil Rights Movement of 1955 to 1968. By 1955, private citizens, annoyed by slow advances to implement desegregation by federal and state authorities, espoused a joint tactic of direct action and peaceful resistance known as “civil disobedience”. Forms of civil disobedience engaged comprised boycotts, “sit-ins” and marches.

The American civil rights movement achieved legal victory against the Board of Education in 1954 known as the Brown decision, legislation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Voting Rights of Act in 1965, Immigration and Nationality Services Act in 1965, and finally the Civil Rights of Act of 1968.

However, the movement did not follow the same set of organization, discourse, and tactics to become a major force to bring change in society. Churches and local grassroots organizations sometimes gained importance and brought with them a much more energetic and broad-based style than the more legalistic approach of groups such as the NAACP. Movement leaders used political opportunity structure to spread the movement and to gain legal rights. From 1955 to 1965, movement strategy changed to direct action and mass mobilization, such as bus boycotts, sit-ins, freedom rides. This study aims to examine the external and internal factors influencing the development of the civil rights movement in the US. A short story of the development of the movement will be described before going into the external and internal factors influencing the movement.

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