Redefining the Color Line : Black Activism in Little Rock, Arkansas, 1940-1970

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Redefining the Color Line : Black Activism in Little Rock, Arkansas, 1940-1970 by KIRK JOHN A., 9780813024967
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  • ISBN: 9780813024967 | 081302496X
  • Cover: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 8/1/2002
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One of the most significant events in the struggle for black civil rights in America was the integration in 1957 of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education that segregation was unconstitutional. The South's campaign of massive resistance against this ruling culminated in a showdown at Little Rock's Central High School, where President Dwight Eisenhower sent federal troops to protect nine black students as they entered the school. Although numerous studies have analyzed the Little Rock school crisis from a variety of perspectives, one striking omission in existing accounts is the role played by local black activists who were at the very center of events. This is the first book to contextualize the events in Little Rock within the unfolding struggle for black rights at local, state, regional, and national levels between 1940 and 1970.

Early civil-rights scholarship focused almost exclusively on the role played by national civil rights organizations between 1955 and 1965. John Kirk argues

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