Resources on Civil Rights and Social Justice


The Civil Rights Movement

  • Civil Rights Movement: This website provides an overview of key moments and figures in the early stages of the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Civil Rights Movement: This PBS page has an overview of the events and people that were central to the Civil Rights movement from 1954-1985, with several video interviews with key figures.
  • The Civil Rights Movement: 1919-1960s: This page provides an overview and history of the Civil Rights Movement.
  • Civil Rights Movement stories, narratives, interviews, and oral- histories: This page is an archive containing interviews, narratives, diary entries, and oral histories from the Civil Rights movement.
  • Southern Freedom Movement Web Links: This website provides a comprehensive index of Civil Rights movement website links and resources.
  • Public Opinion Polls on Civil Rights Movement, 1961-1969: This document provides Gallup Poll data on public opinion related to the Civil Rights movement from 1961-1969.
  • Civil-Rights Protests Have Never Been Popular: This 2017 Atlantic article discusses how civil-rights protests are never popular with the current generation, and thus activists are generally aiming for the next generation.
  • What Happened to the Civil Rights Movement After 1965?: This 2016 article discusses how most students learn about the Civil Rights Movement only up until 1965, and that textbooks stop historical coverage after that year. The author discusses the importance of teaching “The Long Civil Rights Movement” to students.
  • Civil Rights and Conflict in the United States: Selected Speeches: This web page provides a collection of notable speeches throughout U.S. history that concerned slavery, racial equality, women’s rights, Native American conflicts, and capital punishment.
  • 5 of Martin Luther King Jr.’s most memorable speeches: This article provides video footage of five of Martin Luther King Jr.’s recorded speeches.
  • The Misremembering of ‘I Have a Dream’: This Nation article describes how Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech has been misremembered as an eloquent period piece describing a bygone era, rather than as a piercing criticism of American racism that still exists today.
  • Martin Luther King, Thurgood Marshall and the Way to Justice | The Marshall Project: This article discusses Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Thurgood Marshall as predecessors to today’s Black Lives Matter movement, connecting the past of the Civil Rights movement to modern civil rights issues.
  • Malcolm X’s The Ballot or the Bullet: This website provides an introduction to who Malcolm X was as well as full audio and a transcript of his speech.
  • Malcolm X Speech to Civil Rights Workers from Mississippi: This website has a comprehensive list of Malcolm X speeches. Specifically, this page has a transcript of Malcolm X’s speech to Civil Rights Workers from Mississippi.
  • Malcolm X Interview on "Negro and the American Promise": This is a 13 minute video interview with Malcolm X that was recorded in 1963.
  • How Brown v. Board of Education Changed—and Didn't Change—American Education: This 2014 Atlantic article discusses how education inequality still remains a huge problem in American education, and discusses what has changed and what hasn’t changed in the 50 years since Brown v. Board of Education.
  • Ella Baker’s “Bigger Than A Hamburger": Ella Baker, a central leader in the Black Freedom movement, published “Bigger than a Hamburger” in the Southern Patriot in June of 1960. The article is about SCLC concerns regarding the larger implications of restaurant sit-ins and other demonstrations.
  • Ella Baker’s Freedom Day Rally Speech: This page has the full text from Ella Baker’s January 21st, 1964 speech, the “Address at the Hattiesburg Freedom Day Rally.”
  • The 1619 Project: This link has the full two-hour performance of “The 1619 Project,” put on by The New York Times Magazine in August 2019 about how the history of slavery still continues to shape life in the United States.
  • Anne Moody, Coming of Age in Mississippi: This page includes chapters 10 and 11 of Moody’s Coming of Age in Mississippi in which she became aware of the civil rights movement growing up amidst racism.
  • Anne Moody’s Coming of Age in Mississippi: This page includes chapter 26 of Anne Moody’s Coming of Age in Mississippi, which discusses how she became involved in the civil rights movement.

Black Lives Matter

  • A Broken Frame: Black Lives Matter”: This 2016 article from the Harvard Political Review is about the framing of the Black Lives Matter movement.
  • The Science of Why Cops Shoot Young Black Men: This 2014 Mother Jones article is an in-depth exploration of the cognitive science behind our racial prejudices that cannot consciously be controlled, specifically in split-second reactions.
  • Black Lives Matter Resources: This resource page from the Black Lives Matter website has several toolkits that can be used to better understand pressing issues within the movement.


Women’s Rights

  • Women’s Rights as Human Rights: This Oxford Research Encyclopedia of International Studies entry discusses how women’s rights have not been considered human rights over the centuries and how women’s rights are still being dismissed by the UN, governments, and other human rights bodies.
  • Timeline of The Women's Rights Movement in the U.S. : This page provides a timeline of women’s rights from 1769 to the 2017 Women’s March on Washington.
  • Women's Liberation Consciousness Raising: This page is a PDF of A Program for Feminist “Consciousness Raising” by a founder of the women’s liberation movement who penned the term “consciousness-raising.”
  • The Feminist Chronicles: This Feminist Majority Foundation website has a timeline of feminist events for each year from 1953-1993.
  • Women's Liberation Movement in their own words: This web page has links to several writings by feminist women ranging from 1921 to 2001.
  • Views Of Gender In The U.S.: This Pew Research article illustrates the wide partisan gaps in the U.S. over how the left and the right perceive gender inequality.
  • How Americans describe what society values in men and women: Pew Research Center asked over 4,000 Americans a series of questions related to societal values placed on men and women. The respondents answered with more than 1,500 unique words describing traits of each sex: the data is represented on this page.

LGBTQ Issues


Immigrant Rights

  • Made into America: Immigrant Stories Archive: This collection provides numerous interviews with immigrants.
  • Honoring Our Families' Immigrant Narratives: This article discusses the use of immigrant narratives in classwork.
  • A History of Immigration in the USA: This website provides a concise history of immigration in the United States with documents and important dates.
  • The Rights of Non-Citizens: This page has an introduction to the rights of non-citizens internationally, a list of key terms for understanding words like asylum and deportation, rights at stake as stated by the U.N., and international human rights documents.
  • stories | i am a migrant: This website is an archive of interviews with modern-day immigrants and migrants.
  • Illegal immigration from Mexico: What we know: This 2019 Pew Research article provides details on the illegal immigrant population from Mexico.
  • 18 Essays About The Immigrant Experience You Need To Read: This Buzzfeed News article links to 18 personal essays about what it is like to be an immigrant transnationally.
  • Born in the USA: The Immigrant Son Who Fought for Birthright Citizenship: This 2019 article is about a civil rights case in which an American-born son of Chinese immigrants took on the U.S. government to affirm the principle of birthright citizenship.
  • 17 Books on The Immigrant Experience: This Buzzfeed article provides links to 17 books about the immigrant experience, both fiction and non-fiction.
  • Migrant Stories: This International Organization for Migration website has a comprehensive archive of migrant personal stories.



Race in America Today 

Research Studies and Reform Agencies

Historical Background and Overviews

  • Slavery and Our Criminal Justice System is a general historical essay by Bryan Stevenson from the New York Time’s 1609 Project on the history of slavery.
  • Alexander, Michelle’s “The Injustice of This Moment Is Not an Aberration” (New York Times 2020) draws a line between her very influential The New Jim Crow:  Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness to the racialization of immigration.
  • Reimagining Prison Webumentary is a broadly focused multi-media study from the Vera Institute that examines the history of incarceration and concludes with some broad proposals for alternative approaches.
  • The War on Drugs is an Epic Fail is a short video with graphic images by Molly Crabapple that is narrated by Jay Z for the New York Times (2016).

Studies of the Conditions Facing Prisoners and Parolees

Prison Reform


Teaching Rights

  • Civil Rights Teaching: This “Framing the Movement” page includes extensive resources for teaching civil rights topics, including quizzes, readings, and lesson plans.
  • Know Your Rights: This ACLU site provides an overview of various rights with practical examples of where they may be threatened (such as immigrants rights when stopped by police).
  • Human Rights Courses: This site offers free human rights courses from top universities as well as from the United Nations.
  • Human & Constitutional Rights: Human & Constitutional Rights Web Resources includes links to several useful resources on Constitutional law, Human Rights resources, research guides, and more.
  • A Short History of Human Rights: This web resource includes a short history on human rights that can function as an overview for both instructors and students.
  • Immigration Detention Syllabus — Freedom for Immigrants: This site has a 16-part series of readings and tools to set up a course on the U.S. immigration detention system. The syllabus is useful for structuring a human rights course, specifically if you have interests in immigration issues.
  • World Report 2018: United States: This Human Rights Watch page from the Human Rights Watch handles several recent human rights issues, with resources on: harsh criminal sentencing, youth in the criminal justice system, women’s rights, gender identity, national security, and many more.

Social Movement Rhetorics

Unconscious Bias

  • Morality Quiz/Test your Morals, Values & Ethics: This website from YourMorals.Org includes several quizzes and surveys that can be used to help students reflect on their values.  
  • “The Righteous Mind” by Jonathan Haidt: Haidt discusses the foundational value systems that develop as a part of our human nature over time: Care, Fairness, Loyalty, Authority, and Sanctity. He then goes on to describe how these foundations are used differently to support moral differences on the political left and right.
  • Why won't they listen NYT review of Haidt: This New York Times article is a review of Jonathan Haidt’s “The Righteous Mind,” making it a good companion reading to Haidt’s article.
  • How Identity, Not Issues, Explains the Partisan Divide: This Scientific American article addresses the stark partisan divide in our country, and how our unwillingness to connect across party lines has more to do with identity than particular issues.
  • A New Report Offers Insights into Tribalism in the Age of Trump: This New Yorker article provides an in depth look into tribalism and the national divide.
  • Do you live in a bubble? This 25-question quiz from the PBS News Hour gives results on whether or not you live in an upper-class bubble that is disconnected from the average American or American culture at large. It also has details on the implications of those results.
  • How Politics Break Our Brains: This Atlantic article discusses our biased brains and how human beings are partisan by nature, and offers ways to fight our biased impulses.
  • Differences in Conservative and Liberal Brains - 2012 Presidential Election - This page provides links to 16 peer-reviewed scientific studies on how liberals and conservatives differ in brain structures, physiological responses, and more.
  • I'm Right, You're Wrong: This is a 24-minute NPR Hidden Brain podcast episode on how our emotions—not data—play a huge part in how we change our minds.

Generational Attitudes to Social Justice Issues

Taking Action