• 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)

    Therefore although King was more significant than his predecessors Washington, Garvey and Du Bois as an activist, this was partly due to what King had to work with such as television. Further to this, the likes of civil rights activists such as Cesar Chavez who was in the fight for

  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. Revision notes - the USA 1945 to 1980

    There was much intimidation of blacks at this time. Bombings, burnings and shootings were tried to stop the boycott. In 1956 the supreme court declared segregation on the busses to be illegal After this decision more and more groups were formed to began to use this form of protest.

  2. Compare and contrast different fortunes of native, hispanic and asian americans

    the newly discovered gold industry, however were excluded by the English, German and Irish and driven into jobs, which no one else wanted. This led to increased exploitation and minimal wages. Unlike Native Americans, Asian American poverty was based on low pay and poor job opportunities, rather than suffering due to starvation and loss of land.

  1. 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.

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

    and he was most probably a racist as was his family and friends at the time. As he was starting his political career, he did what any ambitious Southern politician would do; pay $10 in membership fees to the KKK, a notorious white supremacist group (it is notable, however, to point out that he later paid them back and left).

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

    raised $237,000 in bail money ($1,800,000 in 2012) to free the demonstrators. Commissioner Connor and the outgoing mayor condemned the resolution. On May 11, a bomb destroyed the Gaston Motel where King had been staying?and had left only hours before?and another damaged the house of A. D. King, Martin Luther King's brother.

  2. 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

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