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African-American Civil Rights Movement

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The African-American Civil Rights Movement encompasses social movements in the United States whose goals were to end racial segregation and discrimination against black Americans and to secure legal recognition and federal protection of the citizenship rights enumerated in the Constitution and federal law. This article covers the phase of the movement between 1954 and 1968, particularly in the South. The movement was characterized by major campaigns of civil resistance. Between 1955 and 1968, acts of nonviolent protest and civil disobedience produced crisis situations between activists and government authorities. Federal, state, and local governments, businesses, and communities often had to respond immediately to these situations that highlighted the inequities faced by African Americans. Forms of protest and/or civil disobedience included boycotts such as the successful Montgomery Bus Boycott in Alabama; "sit-ins" such as the influential Greensboro sit-ins in North Carolina; marches, such as the Selma to Montgomery marches in Alabama; and a wide range of other nonviolent activities.

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