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Selma and the Voting Rights Act
     

Selma and the Voting Rights Act

by David Aretha
 
By the mid-1960s, the civil rights movement had been alive for many years and had achieved a fair amount of success in guaranteeing the rights of all Americans to equality and justice. But throughout much of the country, especially in the South, racism still prevailed and African Americans remained unable to vote, driven away from voter registration by complex and

Overview

By the mid-1960s, the civil rights movement had been alive for many years and had achieved a fair amount of success in guaranteeing the rights of all Americans to equality and justice. But throughout much of the country, especially in the South, racism still prevailed and African Americans remained unable to vote, driven away from voter registration by complex and arbitrary regulations designed only to deny black voters any power or influence.

In 1965, activists, led by Martin Luther King Jr., gathered in Selma, Alabama, where they planned to aggressively protest the voting injustice. Selma was a particularly notorious city, lorded over by racist and authoritarian sheriff Jim Clark. Clark and his allies in Selma, including Alabama governor George Wallace, were determined to stop the civil rights movement and ensure that blacks in Alabama would never have the same rights.

Before long, the peaceful marches organized to protest injustice were met with brutal violence, and civil rights activists-men, women, and children gathered from around the country-were beaten, arrested, and sometimes killed. But the savage violence and cruelty was captured by TV cameras and journalists, and before long, the racism and hatred was known throughout America. People all over the nation joined King and those marching in Selma in demanding justice for all, and an end to the hatred that was tearing the country apart.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
AGERANGE: Ages 12 up.

"The Civil Rights Movement" series by Morgan Reynolds is designed to elaborate on a critical element of American history. In this title readers are presented with the efforts made by African Americans and their supporters to exercise their legal right to vote across the South. Set in the 1960s this effort culminated in violent clashes at Selma, Alabama, where police officers used dogs and struck back at peaceful protestors with clubs and high powered fire hoses. By telling this story in a careful and compelling manner David Aretha captures the danger and dignity of this period in the nation's history. It is almost surreal to think that only a few decades ago things like this could actually occur in a nation grounded upon the principles of democracy. Yet, as Aretha relates in this well-written and compelling book, the history of the Civil Rights Movement is both a recent one and one that continues to this very day. Reviewer: Greg M. Romaneck

School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up
The African-American experience, from 1619 to the present, is fraught with turbulence and terror, joy and heartache. Still, it is difficult for those born after the Civil Rights Movement to understand fully what that period was all about. These two books can help to inform that understanding. The first one looks at the event that is thought by many to have ignited the Civil Rights Movement itself. The murder of 14-year-old Emmett Till in 1955 by two or more racist white men was a horrendous act that shocked America. The second title presents a comprehensive look at the events in Selma, AL, that led to the passage of the groundbreaking Voting Rights Act of 1965. Both books give readers an insider look at the internal conflicts, contradictions, and controversies that surrounded each event. Both books are well organized and clearly written, and have extensive bibliographies, time lines, and black-and-white photos that help place each event within a cultural context. While there are several titles available about the Till murder, fewer books deal solely with the pivotal civil rights campaign in Selma. First purchases for most collections.
—Carol Jones CollinsCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781599350561
Publisher:
Morgan Reynolds Pub
Publication date:
09/28/2007
Series:
Morgan Reynolds Civil Rights Movement Series
Pages:
128
Product dimensions:
6.07(w) x 9.27(h) x 0.49(d)
Lexile:
1140L (what's this?)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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