ASA Panel 2004, Civil Rights at the Crossroads: Challenging the Meta-narrative
Our popular memory and the historical meta-narrative of the Civil Rights movement suggest that the movement began in 1954, with the
Brown v. Board decision and ended with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It is largely seen as a movement of primarily Southern African Americans, with some assistance from mostly Northern whites, struggling for the end of legal segregation and the guarantee of the basic rights entitled to them as citizens of the United States. This panel strives to problematize the meta-narrative of Civil Rights on a number of different fronts--its periodization, its geographical location, its participants, and its
connections with other movements, both in and out of the United States. Most narratives focus on central figures, such as Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King, Jr., or on specific events, such as the 1963 March on Washington or the integration attempts at Central High in Little Rock, Arkansas.
This panel seeks papers that interrogate the parameters of the Civil Rights movement by including other groups that have struggled to obtain their basic rights as citizens, such as Latinos and Asian Americans. I welcome papers that challenge the declension model of Civil Rights history that argues that the demise of the Civil Rights movement occurred with the rise of militancy,
expressed most clearly in the Black Power movement. Recent works have shown that the connections between Civil Rights and Black Power stretch back far before the late 1960s and early 1970s, as do the international influences on the movement and its connections with other groups fighting for their civil rights. Papers should in some way contribute to the ongoing discourse surrounding revisionist civil rights history. I welcome submissions from academics, as well as activist scholars.
Please send a one-page vitae and a one-page abstract of your paper by January 10th, either via post or via email.
Department of American Studies
University of Texas at Austin
1 University Station B7100
Austin, TX 78712-7100 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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