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In 1963 there was tension in the South. African Americans were demanding the right to equal treatment under the law. They faced strong, often violent, opposition from Southern authorities. One such conflict arose at the University of Alabama. When the school admitted black students for the first time, Alabama’s governor George Wallace stood at the door to block their entrance. In doing so, he protested desegregation and clashed with President John F. Kennedy’s administration. Listen to hear more about George Wallace’s contentious views and his lasting impact on politics.
Story Length: 7:01
© 2003 National Public Radio, Inc. Used with the permission of NPR. All rights reserved.
AIR DATE: 06/11/2003
People of all races from all over the country participated in desegregation demonstrations in the South in the 1960s. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. called on clergy—religious leaders—from around the nation to participate in nonviolent protest demonstrations. In this public radio story you will hear the story of a Rabbi who participated in these marches where he was arrested and threatened with violence.
In 1939 Marian Anderson an African-American opera singer was prevented from singing to an integrated audience at Constitution Hall. At the time, Washington DC was a segregated city but didn't have the "Whites Only " signs familiar in the South. Anderson instead performed an outdoor concert on the Lincoln Memorial. This public radio story describes the controversy over a recent children’s book about Anderson’s concert at the Lincoln Memorial that showed “Colored Only” signs in place in public places. You'll hear from people living in the capital at the time talk about the de facto racial segregation that did exist in the city was exposed when Marian Anderson was not allowed to sing in Constitution Hall.
When faced with oppression what's more effective - violent or non-violent resistance? This public radio story looks at the research of conflicts and resistance movements over time and the effectiveness of fighting back without violence. Have students use this analysis to better understand the two sides of the Civil Rights Movement - Martin Luther King Jr's message of non-violent resistance and Malcolm X's "Black Power" philosophy.
These levels of listening complexity can help teachers choose stories for their students. The levels do not relate to the content of the story, but to the complexity of the vocabulary, sentence structure and language in the audio story.
These stories are easier to understand and are a good starting point for elementary students or English learners.
These stories have an average language challenge for middle and high school students, and can be scaffolded for English learners.
These stories have challenging vocabulary and language and students may need to have some background knowledge to understand the story.