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

How far had racial equality been achieved in the USA by 1968?

Extracts from this document...


How far had racial equality been achieved in the USA by 1968? By 1968, racial equality had been broadly achieved in terms of political rights, but there was still a long way to go in social, economic and cultural terms. It should be remembered that racial equality is not just about blacks and whites, as in this context it also related to Native Americans and Hispanic Americans. By 1968, significant progress had been made in terms of political rights. Importantly, the 1965 Voting Rights Act was the culmination of campaigns such as Smith V Allwright, Eisenhower's Civil Rights Acts of 1957 and 60, and SNCC's Mississipis Freedom Summer of 1964. The Act made it illegal to deny black people the vote in any circumstances. Therefore, grandfather clauses and literacy tests were finally outlawed. By 1968, over 3 million black people had been added to the electoral register in southern states, and over a thousand black people had been elected to public office. ...read more.


In terms of social and economic rights, some equality had been achieved by 1968. The 1964 Civil Rights Act, for example, finally banned segregation across the USA. This had an immediate effect on racial equality. By late 1956, 214 cities had desegregated. Additionally, the proportion of black children in segregation schools substantially decreased. The Fair Employment Practices Commission also encouraged the rise of a new black middle class, and therefore during the 1960s, black income doubled. Therefore, it is fair to say that there was some progress towards racial equality in social and economic terms due to the provisions of President Johnson's civil rights legislation. Again, racial equality was not wholly achieved by 1968. First, 58% of black schoolchildren remained in segregated schools in 1968. Secondly, 7% of blacks were unemployed, whereas the national rate of unemployment was only 5%. ...read more.


Native Americans and Hispanic Americans still suffered from racial discrimination by 1968. They had both benefited from President Johnson's civil rights legislation, and both communities had active civil rights campaigns. However, immigrant Hispanic farmworkers still did not qualify for the minimum wage. In many ways, racial minorities such as Native Americans and Hispanic Americans were still victims of prejudice in spite of the gains of the civil rights movement in the 1960s. In conclusion, racial equality had only been achieved to a limited extent by 1968. Although significant progress has been made since 1945 - both formally and in de facto terms - blacks, Native Americans and Hispanic Americans all still suffered from discrimination in terms of economic opportunities, educational provision and their portrayal in the media. The greatest gains were made in political rights, thanks to the Voting rights 1965, but even here minorities, particularly in the south, were still at a disadvantage in 1968. ...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

    Assess the significance of the role of individuals in reducing racial discrimination in the ...

    5 star(s)

    However the war did nothing to reduce discrimination towards other ethnic minorities, for example Japanese Americans received much racial discrimination due to Japan's role in WWII. Although the war was bad for the civil rights of Japanese Americans, Chinese American's received a better way of life, with more civil rights

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Why was Progress for Racial Equality so slow in the years 1945-1955?

    4 star(s)

    Fear of persecution slowed down not only the participants in the cause of racial equality but also willingness to enforce any legal action aiding civil rights or even registration to vote and enable politicians to assist in this matter. Clearly the lack of back participants for civil rights slowed down

  1. Civil Rights Revision Cards 1945-68

    Impact 1. Act gave the federal gov the legal power to end de jure segregation in the South (de jure = defined in law, de facto = how something happens in practice) 2. Prohibited discrimination in public places 3. Further school desegregation, 4. Established an Equal Employment Commission. However, 1.

  2. Why was progress towards racial equality so slow in the period 1945 - 1955?

    Truman had very limited success as his initiatives were simply not comprehensive enough to deal with the racism that existed at all levels of American society. We can notice this through traits of unworkable and unrealistic recommendations within the, ?To Secure These Rights? report.

  1. How much and why did President Truman help to promote racial equality?

    On the other hand, many Americans, such as black and white liberals, thought Truman was unsympathetic to the cause of civil rights and harboured a generally indifferent and apathetic attitude to improving race relations. Truman was born and raised in the small town of Independence in the border state of Missouri (a place that was sympathetic to the Confederacy)

  2. Research on the major Civil rights events between 1963 to 1968

    D. King, Martin Luther King's brother. When police went to inspect the motel, they were met with rocks and bottles from neighbourhood blacks. By May 13, three thousand federal troops were deployed to Birmingham to restore order, even though Alabama Governor George Wallace told President Kennedy that state and local forces were sufficient.

  1. How far had equality for black Americans been achieved by 1968?

    Aaron in 1958 attempted to speed up the integration. This is quite a radical change and a big step toward equality for African Americans. By blacks attending white schools they would now have access to the best if not better recourses that would only advance their education eventually leading to

  2. How accurate is it to say there was significant progress towards racial inequality in ...

    So here we have a pathway. Increased black activism, increased direct action and political judge appointments - alongside government change of tactic leads to the conclusion that significant progress with various court cases have vastly improved the racial equality, in 1945-55. In hindsight we see a consequence of CNO?s direct action campaign in Arkansas.

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