Textual Evidence

This post should be a well-developed paragraph responses to each prompt with reference to contemporary examples or to textual evidence from the assigned reading to support your position.

1. The Protest period entailed a comprehensive push for civil rights that included legal suits, civil disobedience and artistic cultural production. A major part of both projects was the protest or civil rights songs. Using one of the songs featured in the vernacular folder, discuss how figurative language is used to convey the songs message? How does the message of the song support the project of social justice and/or racial advancement?

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2. In addition to music, fiery polemical speeches were a central aspect of black vernacular during the Civil Rights Movement. Perhaps no statesmen or intellectual of the period was as skilled as Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Yet, we oft times only here of two of major speeches: I Have a Dream and I Have Been to the Mountain Top. These speeches read in isolation provide a much different image of Dr. King, his writing style and his vision for the nation than one gets when reading his works in a larger context. Taking a close look at either Letter from A Birmingham Jail or The Three Evils of American Society, explain the thesis of the speech. How does King employ figurative language, repetition, logos, ethos, allusion and/or pathos to craft the thesis? How does your understanding of King’s message in this speech alter or enhance your understanding of Dr. King’s legacy?

3. Amiri Baraka and other Black Arts poets and political organizations like the Nation of Islam and the Black Panther Party often shared a philosophy of Afrocentrism, a cultural and political emphasis on black identity and community and its shared roots in the African Diaspora. How does the concept of Afrocentrcism reflect the generation’s frustration with older political philosophies such as agitation or the New Negro’s concept of Double Victory?

4. Frequently Dr. King and Malcolm X are presented as foils for one another, and emphasis is placed on how their philosophies diverged. However, there was actually a great deal commonly shared in their philosophies and writings, particularly towards the end of each man’s life. Comparing any two written or spoken texts of Dr, King’s or Malcolm X discuss the common themes or questions you see between their texts.

5. We have now studied the abolitionist movement, the Reconstruction efforts of Uplift & Agitation, New Negro efforts for Double Victory, and the Civil Rights era efforts. How can we read our current moment and the BLM protests as a recognition of the success and or failure of the ongoing search for African American racial equity?

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