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Art for EqualityThe NAACPs Cultural Campaign for Civil Rights$
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Jenny Woodley

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813145167

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813145167.001.0001

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“The true picture of America”

“The true picture of America”

Chapter:
(p.191) Conclusion “The true picture of America”
Source:
Art for Equality
Author(s):

Jenny Woodley

Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813145167.003.0008

The conclusion considers the NAACP's relationship to culture from the mid-1950s until the end of the 1960s. Its efforts increasingly focused on employment opportunities within the entertainment industry, often using civil rights legislation to demand greater access for African Americans. An assessment is made of the NAACP's cultural strategy. Its attitude toward culture changed over time, and there were differences of opinion between staff, between leaders and members, and between the head office and the branches. The architects of the NAACP's cultural work viewed “high” culture differently from popular culture. They advocated cultural pluralism and encouraged images of the black middle class. Finally, while the association was sometimes guilty of overstating the importance and power of culture, this work complemented its legal and legislative efforts, and thus it was a significant part of the civil rights struggle.

Keywords:   High culture, Popular culture, Cultural pluralism, Black middle class, Civil rights

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