Black Political and Economic Power (06:39)
In the early 1970s, more black people were graduating from college and gaining professional and political power. Maynard Jackson became the first black mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, working to reform the police department and increase affirmative action. Richard Nixon gained some black endorsements in 1972 due to his support of black economic empowerment.
New Representations in Culture and Arts (04:54)
Black presence on TV expanded during the 1970s, with a wider range of black characters that started to counter stereotypes. James Peterson argues that TV shows also represented the new variety of economic positions for black people in America. As the feminist movement gained new power, black feminists and black women writers showed strong and talented voices.
Economic Opportunity and White Flight (06:13)
Many black families moved out of the inner cities and had increasing access to the American dream. Thomas Oliver moved with his family to a white neighborhood of Queens; he describes the challenging but successful adjustment. After a period of integration, white families began moving out of the neighborhood; Leah Wright Rigueur explains that white people were uncomfortable associating with black people.
Breaking a Baseball Record (03:07)
In 1973 Hank Aaron came close to Babe Ruth's home-run record. He received an immense amount of hate mail and death threats from white people who were threatened by his achievement. When he broke the record the following year, black people celebrated, but there was a sense of panic among white people who were afraid for their superiority.
Integrating Schools in Boston (07:01)
In the 1970s, many schools reflected the segregation of neighborhoods, and this negatively affected funding and resources for black schools. A federal judge ruled in favor of a busing program to integrate schools, but white residents fiercely protested it. Phyllis Ellison, a black student who began to attend a white high school, describes the atmosphere of constant racially-motivated violence.
Legal Backlash Against Integration (03:51)
Although the Civil Rights Movement brought about changes in behavior, many sentiments of hate and fear persisted. In response to school integration, white families moved or sent kids to private school. Many white people saw affirmative action as preferential treatment, and the case of Allan Bakke began a series of rulings which limited affirmative action.
Poverty of Inner-City Black Communities (05:42)
James Peterson explains that policies prevented movement of most black people out of cities; poverty became more concentrated in ghettos. Civil rights legislation benefited the black middle class but not the black poor, who were increasingly vulnerable and isolated. The recession and technological changes of the mid-70s left a high percentage of black people unemployed.
Effects of Reagan Leadership (06:09)
Ronald Reagan began to spread rhetoric against social welfare, targeting black people as abusers of the system. Poverty became an issue of morality rather than systems of oppression. Reagan politics rejected all practical and symbolic progress of the Civil Rights Movement, and his economics destroyed inner cities.
Influence of Hip-Hop (05:07)
In the inner cities, black people were experimenting with new forms of art, music, and dance. Hip-hop brought inspiration and energy to black communities, expressing identity and an opposition to mainstream America. Public Enemy addressed politics and history in a powerful way that inspired a new generation.
New Energy in Civil Rights Movement (05:15)
In 1984, Reverend Jesse Jackson brought hope to black America by running for president. He inspired many young people, attracting diverse groups in an effort to unify all people marginalized by race, ethnicity, or gender. Though some black leaders opposed his campaign, it significantly reinvigorated the Civil Rights Movement.
Credits: Move On Up (Part 2) (01:16)
Credits: Move On Up (Part 2)
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