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Movements that made Black history

Martin Luther King Jr. Was one of the most well-known leaders of the for civil rights movement which spanned from 1955 until his assassination in 1968. Photo courtesy of Pressens Bild/Openverse

Social and political movements have been the foundation for equal rights, not only in the United States but around the world. 

With Black History Month here, the historical movements and problems faced by African American figures or communities are especially observed by the country. 

In this article, we are going list movements that impacted the Black community and changed America forever. 

Harlem Renaissance

A cultural revival of African American music, art, fashion, literature, and more, this movement helped construct a new Black identity in a time where African Americans fled the Deep South. 

Centered around the titular Harlem Neighborhood in New York City, the Harlem Renaissance led Black people to express themselves and create new styles in the arts. It was this revival of culture that reinforced Black identity for the civil rights movement.

Montgomery bus boycott 

Lasting a year, this socio-political protest was one of the foundational events in American history, which was a large contribution to the civil rights movement. 

As a result of racial segregation on the Montgomery Bus Line, Black people were forced to ride in the back of the bus and ordered to let white people take their seats. 

However, this all changed one day after Rosa Parks; an influential African American woman and civil rights activist, who was arrested after refusing to give up her bus seat to a white person.  

The Civil Rights Movement (1954-1968) 

Not only did the Civil Rights Movement set minorities free from segregation, Jim Crow laws, and inequality, the civil rights movement lasted over a decade abolishing institutionalized racism throughout the United States.

 Having grassroots beginnings during America’s Reconstruction era in the late 1800s, the social movement’s characteristics of nonviolent resistance and civil disobedience secured equality for all Americans. 

One of multiple civil rights movements spanned from the late 19th century to the late 20th century, this Civil Rights Movement was responsible for the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Voting Rights Act of 1965, Fair Housing Act of 1968, and so much more that built our country into the one it is today. 

The Black Panther Party 

Originally the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, this political organization was founded by college students Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton in 1966 in Oakland, California. 

Less of a movement and more of an organization, the Black Panther Party drew inspiration from Malcolm X and other important Black movements or figures. 

The party monitored police to witness any brutality that could occur and used open carry laws to protect themselves. It was the Black Panther Party that revolutionized Black America with ideas of Black nationalism and self-defense against police brutality. 

Black Lives Matter 

 One of the more recent movements in this list, Black Lives Matter is largely responsible for anti-racist impacts on social media and popular culture in the United States. Beginning in 2013, the movements was started following the killings of several African Americans by police officers in various states. It was also Black Lives Matter that led to nationwide protests, not only in America, but to other countries as well. 

As of 2020, an estimated 15 to 26 million people participated in these protests, making it one of the largest movements in modern American history. 

Elisha Nunez is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected]

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About the Contributor
Elisha Nuñez
Elisha Nuñez, Staff Reporter
Elisha Nuñez is a multimedia journalism student with a minor in marketing at the University of Texas at El Paso.  He works as a reporter for The Prospector, and loves to write about arts, culture, and people. This semester, he wishes to do more freelance work for publications in and outside of El Paso. After graduation, he would like to experience multiple positions at different places, and even has plans for continuing his current education outside of the U.S.
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Movements that made Black history