Bayard Rustin speaking at an event.

Eclipsed in His Era, Bayard Rustin Gets to Shine in Ours

The civil-rights mastermind was sidelined by his own movement. Now he’s back in the spotlight. What can we learn from his strategies of resistance?
Still from "Rustin" film, on steps of Lincoln Memorial.

The Real History Behind Netflix's 'Rustin' Movie

A new film finally spotlights Bayard Rustin, the gay civil rights activist who organized the 1963 March on Washington.
Civil Rights march for jobs and freedom.

The Hidden Story of Black History and Black Lives Before the Civil Rights Movement

On upending the accepted narrative of the movement.
Black and white photo of Civil Rights protests with crowds picketing.

The Ambitions of the Civil Rights Movement Went Far Beyond Affirmative Action

We should find inspiration in their goals today.
Martin Luther King Jr. with President Lyndon Johnson in 1966 at the White House.

The Man Who Knew Exactly What the F.B.I. Was Doing to Martin Luther King Jr.

He was the president of the United States.
Black and white photograph of Esther Cooper Jackson speaking in front of news microphones.

Esther Cooper Jackson, Civil Rights Pioneer, Dies at 105

A feminist and a self-proclaimed revolutionary, she was in the forefront of the fledgling movement for economic and political equality in the 1940s.
Black and white photo of communists marching in front of the White House to demand the release of the Scottsboro Boys.

The Civil Rights Movement Was Radical to Its Core

The Civil Rights Movement was a radical struggle against Jim Crow tyranny whose early foot soldiers were Communists and labor militants.
Portrait of Medgar Evers.

The Day The Civil-Rights Movement Changed

What my father saw in Mississippi.
Heather Booth playing guitar for Fannie Lou Hamer.

Why Fannie Lou Hamer Endures

She’s mostly remembered for one famous speech. Her actual legacy is far greater than that.
Activist Vivian Washington Filer.

In Twilight of Life, Civil Rights Activists Feel ‘Urgency to Tell Our History’

People who organized during the civil rights movement are now in their 70s and 80s. With fewer and fewer remaining, historians rush to record their stories.
Civil Rights March on Washington, people holding signs calling for integration

How White Violence Turned a Peaceful Civil Rights Demonstration Into Mayhem

Winfred Rembert on protesting in the Jim Crow South and getting arrested.
Bob Moses at SNCC

The Quiet Courage of Bob Moses

The late civil-rights leader understood that grassroots organizing was key to delivering political power to Black Americans in the South.
Bayard Rustin, A. Philip Randolph, and John Morsell hold a press conference in 1963

A Vision of Racial and Economic Justice

A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin knew the fates of the civil rights and labor movements were intertwined. The same is true today.
Martin Luther King Jr.

What Dignity Demands

A new book persuasively places Malcolm X and Martin Luther King at the center of each other’s most dramatic transformations.
Julian Bond

What Julian Bond Taught Me About Politics and Power

Lessons about organizing from the SNCC co-founder.
The burning bush from Exodus, against a background of Egypt and the American South.

The Roots of the Black Prophetic Voice

Why the Exodus must remain central to the African American church.
A line of Black men sit and stand in a half circle. They all where Pullman Porter uniforms.

How Black Pullman Porters Waged a Struggle for “Civil Rights Unionism”

Led by A. Philip Randolph, Black Pullman porters secured dignity on the job — and laid the foundation for the modern Civil Rights Movement.
James Baldwin.

The Vow James Baldwin Made to Young Civil Rights Activists

How James Baldwin confronted America's most exceptional lie.
A group of men gather at a headquarters of the Communist Party USA following a protest demanding pay raise and an end to police brutality, US, circa 1920. Hirz / Archive Photos / Getty

How McCarthyism and the Red Scare Hurt the Black Freedom Struggle

Union activists linked the struggle for black equality in housing, employment, and at the ballot box, to the broader struggle against capitalist domination.
Civil rights leader Wyatt Tee Walker addresses a crowd at St. Phillips AME Church in Atlanta.

How Civil Rights Leader Wyatt Tee Walker Revived Hope After MLK's Death

In a sermon two weeks after MLK's funeral, Walker urged young seminarians to be hopeful and take action for making change happen. His sermon has valuable lessons today.