Examination questions

Quiz on civili rights in USA

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Cultural Studies

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Universität Wien

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gretchen simms

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Abraham Lincoln Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president of the united states of America. He was born in the year 1809 in a small one-roomed log cabin. As his family was rather poor, he received very little formal school education as a child. But because the boy was very interested in learning

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Quiz 2 (10 Points)


  1. Does the President of the United States have the authority to eliminate discrimination? Describe and include if there was a president who did this.


The set of laws passed in the late 1860s and 1870s, gave the President enough authority to wipe out racial discrimination.

The Constitution demanded that the President execute the laws, but no President had used that power.


President Harry Truman appointed a Committee on Civil Rights.

This Committee supported the ideas like:

  • the civil rights section of the Department of Justice should be expanded

  • a Commission on Civil Rights should be permanent

  • Congress should pass laws against lynching and stop voting discrimination

  • and end of racial discrimination in jobs


In 1964 – President Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Civil Rights Act prohibited discrimination of all kinds based on race, color, religion, or national origin.

The law also provided the federal government with the powers to enforce desegregation.


  1. Is Love a feasible weapon against conventional weapons? And what is meant by “love” in the civil rights movement? Give examples.


According to Martin Luther King is LOVE a weapon, which must be used against people who hate blacks, because many of them are taught to hate them, and they are not totally responsible for their hate.

So blacks have to show understanding and compassion for the people who hate them, to show them, how strong and important the love is.

King’s stress on love and nonviolence was powerfully effective throughout the nation, among whites and blacks.

But there were blacks who thought the message naive. Robert William, the president of the local NAACP in North Carolina, said that blacks should defend themselves against violence, with guns if necessary.


Julius Lester, black writer, said that love is fragile and gentle and seeks a like response. “Too much love, Too much love, Nothing kills a Nigger, like a too much love.”


  1. Give the dates of the Civil Rights movement.

    Describe it.


1954 – Brown. v. Board of Education - The decision of the Supreme Court ruled that segregation in public schools is unconstitutional.

1955 – Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott - Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat at the front of the “colored section” of a bus to a white passenger.

The Montgomery Boycott had been led by a veteran trade unionist and experienced organizer F. D. Nixon. This boycott forecasted the style and mood of vast protest movement that would sweep the South in the next ten years.

1957 – Little Rock Nine – President Eisenhower sent troops and National Guard to the integrated school, Little Rock Central High, on the behalf on nine African-American students, because they were blocked to enter the school by orders from Orvar Fabus, the Governor of Arkansas.

1958- 1960 – sit-ins – black people started to “sit in” areas for white people.

These movements were accompanied by violence, because white people didn’t want to accept it.

1961 – Freedom Rides – It was a program sponsored by The Congress of Racial Equality and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committees.

It involved more than 1000 students, who were taking bus trips throughout the South to test out new laws that prohibited segregation in interstate travel facilities.

1962 - First black student enrolled the University of Mississippi.

The President had to send 5000 federal troops, because the incident was surrounded by violence and riots.

1963 – Martin Luther King was arrested and jailed during anti-segregation protests in Birmingham.

During the protests in Birmingham, Commissioner of Public Safety Eugene “Bull” Connor used fire horses and police dogs on black demonstrators. These images of brutality, which were televised and published widely, were instrumental in gaining sympathy for the civil rights movement around the world.

In August 1963, about 200 000 people joined the March on Washington.

At the Lincoln Memorial, they listened the famous speech of Martin Luther King “I have a dream”.
1964 - President Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It prohibited discrimination of all kinds based on race, color, religion, or national origin.

1965 – A black Nationalist and founder of the Organization of Afro-American Unity, Malcolm X, was shot to death.


In this year was held a march to Montgomery in support of voting rights for blacks.

Few months after, the Congress passed the Voting Rights Act, making it easier for Southern blacks to register to vote.


President Johnson issued Executive Order, which required government contractors to “take affirmative action” toward prospective minority employees in all aspects of hiring an employment.

1967 - The Supreme Court ruled that prohibiting interracial marriage was unconstitutional.


In this year came the greatest urban riots of American history.

It involved black people acting against local symbols of white American society.


1968 – Martin Luther King was shot to death. The killing of King brought new urban outbreaks all over the country.

Later that year President Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1968, prohibiting discrimination in the sale, rental, and financing of housing.

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