How far do you agree that the years 1945-55 saw only limited progress in improving the status of African Americans?

Topics: African American, Brown v. Board of Education, Supreme Court of the United States Pages: 6 (2155 words) Published: December 8, 2013
How far do you agree that the years 1945-55 saw only limited progress in improving the status of African Americans? The years of 1945-55 saw limited progress in improving the status of African Americans to an extent; however, during this time period there was also an increased amount of progress for the African American community in improving their status. There were many key factors, which contributed to improving the status of African Americans, such as the work of key civil right parties, for instance the NAACP and their approach to increase grass-roots activism, and their increased membership shows their wide support. In addition to this, there was also help from economic and political victories which demonstrated a fundamental shift in the attitudes of the federal government. There was also help from de jure change, such as significant civil rights court cases and Federal Intervention from President Harry S. Truman, which as a result improved African Americans status. On the other hand, the problems that remained for African Americans was a lack of de facto change, such as the states reluctant attitude to de-segregate, and also there was opposition from the white population, which included brutal violence towards the African American Community, when they had protests. Finally, the opposition from politicians towards de-segregation and civil rights for African Americans all contributed towards limited progress in improving the status of African Americans. The interpretation of progress in improving the status of African Americans was shown through the successful work of the NAACPF (National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People). They were well known for challenging the laws on segregation and Jim Crow Laws, through testing the power of the court, as well as putting pressure on the politicians in Washington and increased grass-roots activism amongst the black community. The NAACP went to court, because it was believed that they could abolish segregation through America’s legal system and arguing that Jim Crow laws were unconstitutional. For instance Smith v. Allwright case argued that all white presidential primaries were unconstitutional, and the primary election effectively could choose the winning candidate. The Supreme Court ruled that all white primaries were unconstitutional, according to the Fifteenth Amendment. Consequently, this meant that all white primaries across America were illegal; therefore, this resulted in African Americans being able to contribute to electing members to congress, which in effect could change the status as they had equal rights to white Americans in this instance and it also allowed the election of Adam Clayton Powell to congress; this marks a turning point, which enabled African Americans to have political progress. Also, the NAACP organised no violent resistance during this time period, which saw an increase in grass-roots activism. For example, the NAACP picketed the four biggest department stores in New Orleans, blocking entry to the stores, for not allowing African Americans to try on hats. In essence of this direct action, it gave African Americans confidence to stand up towards minor segregation; we know this because membership grew from 50,000 to 450,000 in the NAACP. Therefore, the years of 1945-55 showed signs of improving the status of African Americans. The progress in the political and economic area of African Americans is evidence for progress in improving the status of African Americans. This is highlighted by the fact that by 1945 around 15% of the black population of southern states had been registered to vote, an increase from 2% before the war. This suggests, that changing attitudes towards African Americans in the South permitted them to vote, and as a result could potentially help them elect a president who was committed in improving the civil rights of African Americans. Also, by 1945, the black population in the northern states was between 5 and 13...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • How far do you agree that the years 1945-55 saw only limited progress in improving the status of African Americans? Essay
  • 1944-55: Limited Progress in Improving the Status for African Americans Essay
  • how far do you agree the lives of black americans did not improve much between 1944-55? Essay
  • How Accurate Is It To Say That The Role Of The Supreme Court Was The Most Important Factor In Improving The Status Of African Americans In...
  • To what extent was the federal government responsible for improving the status of African Americans in the United States in the years...
  • How far do you agree that the impact of the Second World War was the main reason why the position of African Americans improved in the years...
  • How far was the federal government and Supreme Court responsible for changes to the status of Black African Americans? Essay
  • How far is it accurate to describe black americans as second class citizens in the yers 1945-55 Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free