Title

Public librarians and the civil rights movement: Alabama, 1955-1965

Authors

PT Graham

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2001

Department

University Libraries

Abstract

Racial segregation in southern public libraries affected millions of African Americans before the Civil Rights movement, and for librarians in the South it created a conflict between professional and regional values. Ultimately, it was the efforts of black activists rather than librarians acting on their ethical impulses that ended library segregation. Librarians were constrained by local racial customs, Jim Crow laws, and, often, by their own racial attitudes. Also, librarians recognized that there were inherent dangers associated with defying the segregationists. There were a few, however, who challenged the racial status quo, and these individuals demonstrated the potential of librarians to change society.

Publication Title

LIBRARY QUARTERLY

Volume

71

Issue

1

First Page

1

Last Page

27