Similarities and Differences of Speeches during the Civil Rights Era

Similarities and Differences of Speeches during the Civil Rights Era

History has indicated that both women ad men were instrumental in shaping the civil rights movements. Unlike men like Martin Luther King Junior, most of the women who gave out speeches during the civil rights movements are not known. Men and women dedicated their lives in order to end segregation, slavery, as well as unjust treatment. Martin Luther King junior is very well known for his famous speech on ‘I have a dream’. According to his speech, he was speaking on how slavery and segregation of the blacks can be done away with in the United States of America (Dawn, 2008). Luther wrote while in prison in the year 1963 that the blacks have no choice but to rise against the injustices they were suffering. Luther’s speech is similar to others in many ways and also has differences with others.

All most all civil rights movement speeches had a common theme of ending segregation and unfair treatment. In his speech Luther stated that he has a dream that African Americans being treated equally with the Americans. This can be compared with the speech by Jesse Jackson (Dierenfield, 2008). Jackson worked closely with Luther in seeing to it that the blacks are provided with equal job opportunities with the whites. The theme of fair treatment of black people is portrayed in the two speeches.

Lyndon Johnson in his speech titled ‘The American Promise’ indicated that all Americans deserves the civil rights provided in the constitution regardless their race. This speech was similar to that of Luther in that both of them talked about provision of civil rights to the American blacks. A speech by Elizabeth Stanton on the legislature of the State of New York has some differences with other speeches. In this case, Elizabeth indicated that the court should not have unquestioned authority (Oestler-Grack, 2001).

This speech educated people largely on the composition of the court and how it operated. Linda Brown was a small girl when he indicated that the slaves are like human beings and should be treated equally. She was very braze to break into the army stores and stole weapons which she used to release the slave.  Speech by Linda Brown is similar to that of other people whop talked about segregation and slavery. Bridges Ruby contributed a lot to help segregation in schools. These speeches indicated that the blacks were treated unfairly by the white in a number of ways and the speakers wanted to liberate them.

One of the common themes which are set out vividly in the civil rights movement speeches is segregation and unfair treatment. In this case, the blacks had been segregated a lot by the whites in all social statuses and hence they required a way of saving them. Segregation of the blacks was practiced in schools, health care provision centers, and in job opportunities (Dierenfield, 2008). The speakers against this segregation indicated that both the blacks and whites are human beings, which require ultimate care and fair treatment.Similarities and Differences of Speeches during the Civil Rights Era The other factor that is well brought up in these speeches is the aspect of fair treatment. The blacks were not treated equally with the whites especially in matters relating to education, job opportunities and health care provision (Oestler-Grack, 2001). The other aspect that stands out in these speeches is unfair treatment of the blacks. In this case, the blacks were enslaved and segregated at schools.


Dawn, T. (2008). The Politics of Civil Rights: Framing  the Debate Over Access to Higher Education. New Jersey: Open Press.

Dierenfield, B. (2008). The Civil Rights Movement. Sudbury: Dovers

Oestler-Grack, R. (2001). Going to School during the Civil Rights Movement. New York: Wiley