Music of the Civil Rights Era, 1954-1968
The “freedom songs” became an important motivating force during the Civil Rights Movement from 1954 to 1968. In this unit, students explore the role of music in pulling people together around a cause. They will learn how many slave songs, gospel songs, folk songs and labor songs were collected, adapted, and taught to young civil rights activists. These songs fostered courage, unity and hope within the Civil Rights Movement. They may interview people of different generations to learn more about the aesthetics of music and design a service experience related to music.
Students will understand why "freedom songs" became such an important motivating force during the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1968. They will also see how important figures in the Civil Rights Movement contributed to the common good.
Students will experience the aesthetics of music and tie that experience into how the "freedom songs" may have motivated the Civil Rights activists as they sought to aid the common good.
Students will form conclusions regarding the motivational effects of music on the mind and the importance of performing community service.