HIST 345: Women's Activism: From Jim Crow to Black Power
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Course Information from the University Catalog
At the turn of the 20th century popular culture categorized African American women as desexualized Mammies or immoral Jezebels. These devastating depictions were also linked to the myth of black men as hypersexual rapists of white women whose image was infused with a heightened purity. This course examines the simultaneous struggles of black women to defend their name and fight all forms of race and sex proscriptions from the turn of the century period of Jim Crow segregation and disfranchisement through the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements of the 1960s. This course establishes that the activism of women was central to struggles to overturn segregation, end lynching, and secure political and civil rights. The course explores the effects of sexist and racist ideologies on their lives and activism, the changes in their economic and political status, the legal and social barriers they faced, and the ways in which they were defined within families and within popular culture. Limited to three attempts.