Social Reform, 1950s-1970s

Overview

From the period of the 1950s through the 1970s, struggles for civil and social rights, equality, and justice swept the United States. At universities and colleges, students championed the Free Speech Movement, demanding their right to free speech, political protest, and academic freedom. African Americans struggled for civil rights, and many groups fought for social justice — demanding equal rights, better working conditions, and an end to the Vietnam War. In 1965, feelings about racial inequality and economic and social injustice boiled over into widespread violence for the first time in Los Angeles's African American community of Watts. The community's transformation from angry frustration to hopeful growth is just one example of what was taking place in similar neighborhoods across the country during this tumultuous time.

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