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Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965$
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Davis W. Houck and David E. Dixon

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781604731071

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604731071.001.0001

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Diane Nash

Diane Nash

August 1961, National Catholic Conference for Interracial Justice, Detroit, Michigan

Chapter:
(p.154) Diane Nash
Source:
Women and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965
Author(s):

Davis W. Houck

David E. Dixon

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781604731071.003.0019

Born on May 15, 1938, in Chicago, Illinois, Diane Nash attended public and Catholic schools on the Southside, where she also won several beauty pageants. Nash moved from a northern world, where blacks could compete successfully with white women in beauty pageants, to Tennessee, where segregation was rampant. This transition led her to become involved in the civil rights movement. In 1960, she began attending the Reverend James Lawson’s nonviolent civil disobedience workshops in Nashville, and later began organizing sit-ins. Nash also earned a reputation for her ability to build bridges among ego-involved men at the NAACP, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. In August 1961, Nash spoke at the National Catholic Conference for Interracial Justice in Detroit, Michigan. This chapter includes Nash’s speech, in which she attributed global problems to a lack of respect for human dignity. To illustrate her views, Nash recounted her personal experiences in the South. She also justified her methods of change, namely, boycotts and freedom rides.

Keywords:   speech, Diane Nash, segregation, civil rights movement, NAACP, National Catholic Conference for Interracial Justice, Detroit, South, boycotts, freedom rides

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