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Civil Rights – A Legacy of Struggle An Analysis of Oral History Interviews

Analysis and Presentation of Oral History Transcript on the Civil Rights Movement.

Background: The state of Mississippi was a focal point in the struggle for Civil Rights Movement. Thus, in an attempt to document and preserve the memorial experiences surrounding this historical period in American history, the University of Southern Mississippi has established a digital archive on the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi. This repository of primary source materials contains audio clips of original oral history interviews with significant figures in the struggle for civil rights in the state of Mississippi.

2. Write a 6-8 page critique of your interview transcript that creates a picture of that person’s experiences during the struggle for civil rights in Mississippi. Use specific quotes when necessary.

Your critique should include a review of the interviewees’ life history, details of his/her life experiences under the system of Jim Crow segregation, and the meaning of such experiences. In developing your critique, you should be able to identify and analyze some of the critical beliefs and rationalizations (i.e., racist ideologies, behaviors, practices, etc.), that emerged in this transcript, through the Cycle of Socialization. The following should guide your critical analysis.

a.  Describe how the circular (coming from all sides and sources) nature of the Jim Crow order remained intact throughout the South.

b.  Describe systems of racialized social control and oppression that were not only self-perpetuating (intradependent), but critical in mandating de jure racial segregation in public facilities throughout the South.

c.  What were some of the pervasive strategies were employed by various social, political, and legal institutions to ensure that fear and anxiety over the possibility of miscegenation, or the mixing of races, would remain a critical issue within our society?

d.  What were some of the internalized values, beliefs, and attitudes that consistently gave order and meaning to Jim Crow segregation and influenced how White America perceived and interacted with African Americans?

e.  What are some of the unconscious and unnamed processes of organizational socialization (i.e., enactment, ceremonies, rites, stories, rituals, symbols, etc.) used by major institutions to keep race and racism alive?

f.  What were some of the internalized values, beliefs, and attitudes that consistently gave order and meaning to Jim Crow segregation and influenced how African Americans perceived and interacted  with White America?

3. Within your analysis of this oral history transcript, you should also include a discussion of at least one scholarly research study (i.e., Journal of African American History, Journal of Black Studies, Journal of American History, etc.) that supports your analysis of critical beliefs and rationalizations (i.e., racist ideologies, behaviors, practices, etc.) through the Cycle of Socialization. This discussion should highlight key elements identified in your journal research study (i.e., problem under investigation, purpose of the research, research methodology, research findings, etc.) that support your arguments. Special Note: Be sure to attach a copy of the first page of your journal article to your paper.

4. Conclusion and Reflections: Summarize your arguments and connect them to the journal research study. Finally, write a brief reflection that characterizes your personal opinion about the Civil Rights Movement.

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