The program features women who were active in the Civil Rights Movement, including Dorothy Zellner, Martha Noonan, and Judy Richardson. Professor Blanche Wiesen Cook of the Graduate Center and John Jay College moderate the discussion.
Blanche Wiesen Cook
Dr. Blanche Wiesen Cook is a distinguished professor of history and women's studies at John Jay College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She has been honored as Scholar of the Year by the New York State Council on the Humanities.
Her book, Eleanor Roosevelt: Volume One, published in 1992, remained on The New York Times bestseller list for three months, and received numerous awards. Volume Two was published in 1999, and Dr. Cook currently is working on the third and final volume.
Martha Prescod Norman Noonan, community organizer, activist, homemaker, and teacher of history including the Civil Rights Movement, lives near Baltimore.
Filmmaker and Movement lecturer Judy Richardson's projects include the PBS documentary series Eyes on the Prize and other historical documentaries. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
New York City consultant Dorothy M. Zellner wrote and edited for the Center for Constitutional Rights and CUNY Law School.
Movement for racial equality in the U.S. that, through nonviolent protest, broke the pattern of racial segregation in the South and achieved equal rights legislation for blacks. Following the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954), African American and white supporters attempted to end entrenched segregationist practices. When Rosa Parks was arrested in 1955 in Montgomery, Ala., an African American boycott of the bus system was led by Martin Luther King, Jr., and Ralph Abernathy. In the early 1960s the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee led boycotts and sit-ins to desegregate many public facilities. Using the nonviolent methods of Mohandas K. Gandhi, the movement spread, forcing the desegregation of department stores, supermarkets, libraries, and movie theatres. The Deep South remained adamant in its opposition to most desegregation measures, often violently; protesters were attacked and occasionally killed. Their efforts culminated in a march on Washington, D.C., in 1963 to support civil rights legislation. Following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson persuaded Congress to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a victory that was followed by the Voting Rights Act in 1965. After 1965, militant groups such as the Black Panther Party split off from the civil rights movement, and riots in black ghettos and King's assassination caused many supporters to withdraw. In the succeeding decades, leaders sought power through elective office and substantive economic and educational gains through affirmative action.
(born Feb. 4, 1913, Tuskegee, Ala., U.S.died Oct. 24, 2005, Detroit, Mich.) U.S. civil rights activist. She worked as a seamstress in Montgomery, Ala., where she joined the NAACP in 1943. In 1955 she was arrested after refusing to give her seat on a public bus to a white man. The resultant boycott of the city's bus system, organized by Martin Luther King, Jr., and others, brought the civil rights movement to new prominence. In 1957 Parks moved to Detroit, where she was a staff assistant (196588) to U.S. Rep. John Conyers. She was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 1999.