After the RebellionBlack Youth, Social Movement Activism, and the Post-Civil Rights Generation

After the RebellionBlack Youth, Social Movement Activism, and the Post-Civil Rights Generation

Sekou M. Franklin

Print publication date: 2016

ISBN: 9780814789384

Publisher: NYU Press

Abstract

What happened to black youth in the post-civil rights generation? What kind of causes did they rally around and were they even rallying in the first place? This book takes a close look at a variety of key civil rights groups across the country over the last forty years to provide a broad view of black youth and social movement activism. It examines popular mobilization among the generation of activists—principally black students, youth, and young adults—who came of age after the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The book argues that the political environment in the post-civil rights era, along with constraints on social activism, made it particularly difficult for young black activists to start and sustain popular mobilization campaigns. Building on case studies from around the country—including New York, the Carolinas, California, Louisiana, and Baltimore—the book explores the inner workings and end results of activist groups such as the Southern Negro Youth Congress, Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, the Student Organization for Black Unity, the Free South Africa Campaign, the New Haven Youth Movement, the Black Student Leadership Network, the Juvenile Justice Reform Movement, and the AFL-CIO's Union Summer campaign. It demonstrates how youth-based movements and intergenerational campaigns have attempted to circumvent modern constraints, providing insight into how the very inner workings of these organizations have and have not been effective in creating change and involving youth.