Delaying the Dream: Southern Senators and the Fight against Civil Rights, 1938-1965

Delaying the Dream: Southern Senators and the Fight against Civil Rights, 1938-1965

by Keith M. Finley


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Few historical events lend themselves to such a sharp delineation between right and wrong as does the civil rights struggle. Consequently, many historical accounts of white resistance to civil rights legislation emphasize the ferocity of the opposition, from the Ole Miss riots to the depredations of Eugene “Bull” Conner’s Birmingham police force to George Wallace’s stand on the schoolhouse steps. While such hostile episodes frequently occurred in the Jim Crow South, civil rights adversaries also employed other, less confrontational but remarkably successful, tactics to deny equal rights to black Americans. In Delaying the Dream, Keith M. Finley explores gradations in the opposition by examining how the region’s principal national spokesmen—its United States senators—addressed themselves to the civil rights question and developed a concerted plan of action to thwart legislation: the use of strategic delay.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780807137116
Publisher: Louisiana State University Press
Publication date: 09/01/2010
Series: Making the Modern South
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Keith M. Finley is assistant director of the Center for Southeast Louisiana Studies and an instructor of history at Southeastern Louisiana University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

1 Opening Pandora's Box 15

2 The Origins of Strategic Delay 56

3 The Battle Broadens 97

4 Division in the Ranks 138

5 Victory through Compromise 191

6 This Is Where the Battle Will be Won or Lost 233

7 Inevitable Defeat 281

Conclusion 306

Note on Sources 317

Selected Bibliography 321

Index 333

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