WEEK 3 (Jan. 31 & Feb. 2)

We’ll read and discuss Jo Ann Robinson’s The Montgomery Bus Boycott and the Women Who Started It this week. This first-hand account by one of the boycott’s leaders is a great opportunity to learn about this historic event as well as the kinds of work that made it both possible and successful.

It’s not a difficult book to read, or a long one, but it is a book. I recommend you space out your reading a little bit at a time over the next week.

We’ll read Chapters 1-6 in the Robinson book and discuss the readings in our collaborative discussion format. As always, prepare 3-5 questions or discussion prompts on the text. We’ll follow-up our discussion with a short lecture providing some more details and analysis of the boycott.

We’ll finish the Robinson book by reading Chapters 7-9. We’ll discuss them for part of class, in an informal discussion involving everyone. For the second half of class we’ll watch part of an episode of Eyes on the Prize, the now legendary documentary series from 1987, produced by PBS.

To help our discussion, I also ask you to read a one-page primary historical document, provided to you as DCR 5.

The below clip is of Thurgood Marshall being interviewed by journalist Mike Wallace in 1957, about three years after the Brown v. Board decision.

WEEK 2 (Jan. 24 & 26)

We’ll start building our class story together as we discuss the landmark Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education. We’ll also turn in our first Document Analysis Exercise.

FRIDAY (Jan. 20)
Your informal “Who are YOU?” assignment is due via email no later than January 20th at 12:00 noon. The assignment is described in detail on page 4 of the syllabus (or in the WORK page, above).

After a song, we’ll start class with our first “collaborative discussion,” where we’ll discuss “A Life of Being Rebellious,” by Jeanne Theoharis (DCR 2), and a chapter (“The Court Decides”) from James Patterson’s book on Brown v. Board (DCR 3). As we’ll do each time we use this format, I will select 6-7 students at random to serve as our discussants.

To prepare for discussion (and the possibility of being selected), each of you should bring to class 3-5 questions or discussion prompts related to the reading. These should be typed up and printed out (on actual paper). I will collect these from everyone, whether or not you were selected to discuss.

After our discussion, we’ll have a short lecture setting the context of the postwar Freedom Struggle.

The bulk of our class will be a lecture on Brown v. Board. We’ll also read and discuss a few brief documents, which I’ll pass out in class.

You’ll also turn in your first Document Analysis assignment. These short analyses of historical primary sources are described in detail on page 5 of the syllabus. For this first go around, you’ll read and analyze the response of one African American––writer Zora Neale Hurston––to the Brown decision. Her views are available to you as DCR 4.

Your Document Analysis should be composed according to the “Writing Guidelines” document, which is posted in the READINGS folder on Sakai (below all the DCRs). You should save your file as a PDF, and name the file “LastName-DA1.pdf” before uploading it to our Sakai Drop Box.


In the News
Florida Says AP African American Studies Program ‘Lacks Educational Value’ (Rolling Stone, January 18, 2023).


Welcome to our first week of class! We’ll take care of some introductory things this week as we also start to build the “story” that is our class.

We’ll meet in our first class and start to get to know each other as we review a bit of the semester ahead.

We’ll have our first “regular” class, starting off with a song and followed by a lecture introducing some major class themes. To help that learning, we’ll also read and discuss (as a whole class) two short readings: 1) an essay by long-time organizer Mike Miller titled “What is an Organizer?” and 2) just the first page of “The Souls of White Folks” (1920), an essay by the legendary intellectual W.E.B. DuBois.

Be good and be well…

WELCOME to Hist 25CH!

Welcome to the course website for the Spring 2023 section of “All Power to the People!”: Social Movements for Justice!

My name is Tomás F. Summers Sandoval Jr. and I’ll be your instructor for the semester. In the pages above, you’ll find a website version of our course syllabus. You can download our “paper” syllabus, as well as all other course documents, are on our Sakai site (in the “Readings” folder).

Please read the syllabus or explore the pages above to learn more about our class. If you have any questions, bring them to our first meeting or post them in the comments to this post.

Our first class meeting will be Tuesday, January 17 at 9:35AM. We’ll meet in Crookshank Hall, room 10.