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The Music of the Civil Rights Movement

In this lesson, developed by and included with the permission of TeachRock, students will address the essential question: How did popular music reflect the values of the civil rights movement of the 1960s and help the movement convey its message?

Students will examine:

  • the role of music as a motivating force in the civil rights movement.
  • the history of “We Shall Overcome” and its central importance to the civil rights movement.
  • the ways in which popular songs of different musical genres reflected the values and beliefs of the civil rights movement.
  • the effectiveness of music in spreading the message of the civil rights movement.

Access The Music of the Civil Rights Movement and accompanying materials on TeachRock’s website.