1966 May 13

Role of Women in the Civil Rights Movement Generates Conflict, Controversy


A report, “Stresses of the White Female Worker in the Civil Rights Movement,” by the prominent psychiatrist Alvin Poussaint, MD, was delivered at the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting. The issue of the role of women in Civil Rights Movement, including all women regardless of race, had first surfaced in 1964, exposing tensions over the second-class treatment of women in the movement. (See November 6, 1964.)

Many historians argue that the conflicts within the civil rights movement were one of the sources of the rebirth of the women’s movement in the mid-1960s.

Read the paper: http://www.crmvet.org/docs/poussaint.pdf

Read: Sarah Evans, Personal Politics: The Roots of Women’s Liberation in the Civil Rights Movement and the New Left (1979)

Read first-hand accounts: Martha Noonan, et al., ed.,  Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC (2010)

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