Aug 10, 2020
In this episode we interview SNCC Veterans Jennifer Lawson and Charles “Charlie” Cobb. They discuss their experiences organizing in rural Mississippi and Alabama with SNCC in the 1960’s at the height of the era we know as the Civil Rights Movement. They discuss working in small towns and rural Southern communities, and connecting with organizing traditions with origins in the everyday resistance to slavery. They each talk about the political evolution of the organization, changes in leadership and the international dimensions of the struggle at the time. Charlie & Jennifer both talk about the lack of contradiction between self-defense and nonviolence, as discussed in Charlie’s book This Nonviolent Stuff’ll Get You Killed. Jennifer shares her reflections on the roles of women within the organization. Through conversation Lawson and Cobb make visible the pockets of resistance they tapped into in the South, and demystify some of the mythology of the Civil Rights Movement along the way.
photo credit (top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right): Danny Lyon/Magnum, Julius Lester, Alabama Photographs and Pictures Collection/ADAH, Maria Varela/Takestock.