• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Assess the view that Booker T. Washington was the most important leader in the development of African American civil rights in the period of 1865 to 1992.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Assess the view that Booker T. Washington was the most important leader in the development of African American civil rights in the period of 1865 to 1992. Booker T. Washington was arguably the first of at least five important leaders in the development of black civil rights. The work of W.E.B Du Bois continued throughout the period from 1909 to the 1950s, while Malcolm X and Garvey experienced short-lived but powerful leadership. Overall, Martin Luther King was the most important leader ? showing empathy towards all African American attitudes. Booker T. Washington advocated the ?Accomodationist? strategy ? he believed blacks should not demand anything, and should work towards civil rights through education. He formed the Tuskegee Institute and made his opinion known in his Atlanta Compromise Speech in 1895; both received positive responses, and did encourage black people to pursue higher aspirations through education. Therefore, Washington was an important leader in ?laying the foundation? for African Americans to use their rights effectively and pragmatically. However, his actions were extremely limited as the President ? Andrew Johnson was racist, followed by other racist presidents, and the Supreme Court was not influenced by Washington. ...read more.

Middle

He was important because this attitude set in motion the ?Black Power? attitude that would emerge in the 1960s, while in comparison, Washington encouraged a ?modest? and ?victimised? black attitude ? which was, overall, received negatively by black people. However, Garvey?s career coincided with economic prosperity, the Jazz Age and the Harlem Renaissance; these positive factors would have happened regardless of Garvey ? giving him less importance as a leader of African Americans towards civil rights. The fact that Washington had the Jim Crow laws and extremely racist Supreme Court officials to contend with, compared with Garvey?s ?lucky? timing of the economy and weakened Supreme Court ? by Du Bois ? this can show that Washington was more important than Garvey. Washington may not have achieved much, compared to other leaders, but he was at the very start of the period ? challenging America when racism was still deeply engrained. Whereas Garvey also did not achieve much, but he came at a time when attitudes had already begun to change ? Garvey was not as important as Washington. Malcolm X continued Garvey?s view of white racism never changing, but his attitude was more radical than Garvey?s and perhaps not as important as Washington, as Malcolm X had advantages during his career; while Washington?s only advantage was his education. ...read more.

Conclusion

encouraged education and less resentment towards the white man ? in that sense, the social sense, Washington was not the most important leader, Martin Luther King was. Even in the political sense, King was the most important leader and Washington was clearly not as important as even Du Bois and the NAACP. For example, King was so successful with Governmental support, that by 1961 810 Southern towns had desegregated facilities. Whereas Washington merely lunched with Teddy Roosevelt and attended events with White political figures while the Supreme Court remained racist. To conclude, although Martin Luther King had a number of benefits: the most supportive president, the wonders of the media, growing white sympathy and a golden opportunity with the 100th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation ? King was clearly the most important leader. Garvey and Malcolm X had too strong a view, and did not take action to help African Americans for a sustained period of time, Du Bois was perhaps the second most important ? as the NAACP showed a gradual success in the courts; encompassing social and political change. Booker T. Washington was important as he set civil rights activism in motion, but he did not take on a role as important as Martin Luther King. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level History of the USA, 1840-1968 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level History of the USA, 1840-1968 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    To what extent did the US president hinder rather than help the development of ...

    3 star(s)

    One of the Presidents who helped the development of African Americans Civil Rights was Grant. He ratified the 15th Amendment. He developed the 1st and 2nd enforcement acts. This was clear progress in the development of Civil Rights for African Americans.

  2. Peer reviewed

    To what extent were Malcolm X and the subsequent Black Power Movement the 'Evil ...

    4 star(s)

    Like Malcolm X before them, groups within the BPM aimed at improving the conditions in the ghettos. Striking figures of black illiteracy - only 32% of black pupils in the ghetto finished high school - and high rates of unemployment - in the early 1960s, 46% of those unemployed were

  1. Compare the aims, methods and achievements of MLK and Malcolm X. Which man do ...

    than an activist, and that his easily attacked espousals of violence and his belief in the Doctrine of Yakub (which suggested that an ancient black scientist named Yakub created white men, and slavery was Allah's punishment for this) made him likely to fail in affecting mainstream white society.

  2. Comparison of Presidents Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower and Lyndon Johnson

    of what he did was mainly just backing many of the ideas of Civil Rights Leaders rather than being personally responsible for making these advancements. Eisenhower devoted little speech time, such as in his State of the Union address in 1953, to civil rights.

  1. Short term impact of Malcolm X

    of us up, its gonna take time for those of us who are awake now to wake the others up"42Malcolm became an inspiration for ghetto blacks drawing attention to the terrible conditions they were subject to; "He made Black Nationalism in its various forms appealing to the angry generation of black youth"43becoming a role model and an icon.

  2. Linguistic Study - Linguistic Analysis of Martin Luther King's 'I Have a Dream', and ...

    the word 'American' throughout the speech, and describing the American constitution as 'magnificent'. This shows togetherness with every person in America, regardless of colour. He does this to break barriers with other ethnic groups, and focuses on something they have in common, which is patriotism.

  1. Civil Rights Revision Cards 1945-68

    Overview In 1962 James Meredith becomes the first black student to enroll at the University of Mississippi. Violence and riots surrounding the incident cause President Kennedy to send 5,000 federal troops. 1. Who? MEREDITH 1. Son of sharecropper who had served in US Air Force ? Applied for Uni of M NAACP 1.

  2. Assess the view that the Supreme Court was the most important branch of the ...

    The other branches of the federal government, president and Congress, were not as important as the Supreme Court in helping blacks attain social rights. Congress and the president are more ?connected? to each other than they are with the Supreme Court.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work