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 History Review   


The Role of Ideas in the Civil Rights South
Edited by Ted Ownby
University Press of Mississippi, 2002
Softcover, $18.00 (219pp)
ISBN: 1-57806-468-6

The essays included in The Role of Ideas in the Civil Rights South began as a part of the annual Porter L. Fortune, Jr. History Symposium at the University of Mississippi. The contributors include: Tony Badger, David L. Chappell, Elizabeth Jacoway, Richard H. King, Ralph E. Luker, Charles Marsh, Keith D. Miller, Linda Reed, and Lauren F. Winner. Their credentials are impressive and they explore the topic from historical, literary, and religious viewpoints. 

Each scholar has given serious thought to questions about the role of religion, freedom, race, liberalism, conservatism, and humanity in the Civil Rights movement. 

The American South in the 1950s and 1960s was the battleground for the activists who intended to challenge segregation and Jim Crow laws. They questioned the status quo, challenged authority, and accepted the moral leadership necessary for changing America. 

Ted Downby has done an excellent job of weaving the essays. Opening the collection with David L. Chappell's "Neibuhrisms and Myrdaleries" reminds readers of "the intellectual roots" of the movement. He wisely follows up the intellectual with the spiritual, ending with the political.


Pam Kingsbury
Southern Scribe Reviews

2002, Southern Scribe Reviews, All Rights Reserved