History Essay, Research Paper
Relationship Between Civil Rights Movement and Feminist Agenda
In this Essay I will examine relationship between Civil Rights Movement and how the feminist agenda of second wave feminism. Furthermore, I will explain how women shaped the Civil Rights Movement, and also how they redefined their own feminism because of the ways in which they interacted with the movement.
In 1952, the separate but equal laws were once again challenged in the case of Brown vs. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. The case was based on the segregation of educational facilities. The NAACP changed their focus from integrating higher educational facilities to integrated grade schools. After the change, the NAACP stepped in on this case and argued that segregated educational facilities were unequal, degrading to black students, and violated the fourteenth amendment’s guarantee for equal protection. On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court ruled that segregated schools were inherently unequal and did violate the fourteenth amendment. The decision of Plessy vs. Ferguson had finally been overturned and public schools were to be integrated. Brown vs. the Board of Education was a victory for the blacks, however southern whites reacted to the court’s decision with extreme racism. There were two major reasons for the civil rights movement one was Impact of WWII and Brown vs. Board of Education.
Females played great role in Civil rights movement. One sit-in involved Anne Moody the author of Coming of Age in Mississippi. During this sit-in, whites at the lunch counter attacked Anne Moody and other activist, but they didn’t give up until they were escorted out by the police. This is what happened on the evening of December l, 1955: Parks took the bus because she was feeling particularly tired after a long day at work. She was sitting in the middle section, glad to be off her feet at last, when a white man boarded the bus and demanded that her row be cleared because the white section was full. The others in the row obediently moved to the back of the bus, but Parks just didn’t feel like standing for the rest of the journey, and she quietly refused to move. At this, the white bus driver threatened to call the police unless Parks gave her up her seat, but she refused to give up her seat and bus driver called the police and they arrested her. So this respectable, middle-aged woman was taken to the police station, where she was fingerprinted and jailed. She was allowed to make one phone call. She called a NAACP lawyer, who arranged for her to be released on bail.
Word of Parks’s arrest spread quickly, and the Women’s Political Council decided to protest her treatment by organizing a boycott of the buses. Women designed bus boycott. Jo Ann Robinson who was College Professor who talked to her friend who was attorney to help Mrs. Parks and also he helped to spread the news of bus boycott. The boycott was set for December 5, the day of Parks’s trial, but Martin Luther King, Jr.and other prominent members of Montgomery’s black community realized that here was a chance to take a firm stand on segregation. As a result, the Montgomery Improvement Association was formed to organize a boycott that would continue until the bus segregation laws were changed. Leaflets were distributed telling people not to ride the buses, and other forms of transport were laid on. The boycott lasted 382 days, causing the Bus Company to lose a vast amount of money. Everyone played and tried their best to keep up with the boycott. They walked to work etc. One day this old lady who looked very tired and this white men saw her and offered her to ride in his car, she responded “my feets is tired, but my soul is rested” Meanwhile, Parks was fined for failing to obey a city ordinance, but on the advice of her lawyers she refused to pay the fine so that they could challenge the segregation law in court. The following year, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled the Montgomery segregation law illegal, and the boycott was at last called off. Yet Parks had started far more than a bus boycott. Other cities followed Montgomery’s example and were protesting their segregation laws. Also they did other acts such as The March on Washington, Martin Luther King’s speech. Mean reason they had many organiztion which were orgainized very well such as NAACP, SNCC, and also their success was because Non violent direct confrontation. They knew the consequences breaking the rules but they desire and wants were much more stronger.
Second wave of feminism they want a right too This protest begin in 1950 and died in 1984. They want to have equal pay, higher education, and want to end the discrimination. Second Wave feminism had two branches, Liberal Feminists and Radical Feminists also Working class women played great role too. Liberal Feminist’s objectives were for equality within the existing social structure and also equality with men. However, Radical Feminists objectives were to breakdown of the system of power that sustains mail advantage in every sphere of life, including economics, politics, the family, religion, law, education, science, and medicine, as well as in the interactions of everyday life. Also Radical women are not defined as white, middle class agenda rather social class and ethnicity/race define the issues facing women also.
The relationship between the Civil Rights Movement and the feminist agenda of Second wave feminism those women played great role in both. They both of these want to have equal rights, at work, school, and also end the discrimination. Civil Rights Movement and Second Wave of Feminism struggled greatly but they had great success.
In conclusion, I would say that Civil Rights Movement and Second Wave of Feminism struggled a lot but after all it was worth it. They had many similarities and women played great roles organizing meetings and interaction with other women that brought unity and that lead them into success.