The Baldwin-Buckley Debate with Nicholas Buccola | BRI Scholar Talks
What timeless messages does the Baldwin-Buckley Debate teach about the discussion of race in the 1960s? In this Scholar Talk video, BRI Senior Teaching Fellow Tony Williams sits down with Nicholas Buccola, writer and expert in American political thought, to discuss Buccola's new book, "The Fire is Upon Us: James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the Debate Over Race in America." Buccola delves into the backgrounds of both James Baldwin, the foremost literary voice of the civil rights movement, and William F. Buckley Jr., one of America's most influential conservatives and opponent of the civil rights movement, to describe their radically different views on the racial divide in America. How far have we come from this moment in 1965, and what work lies ahead of us in pursuit of true equality for all?
The Civil Rights Movement
The Civil Rights Movement sought to win the American promise of liberty and equality during the twentieth-century. From the early struggles of the 1940s to the crowning successes of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts that changed the legal status of African-Americans in the United States, the Civil Rights Movement firmly grounded its appeals for liberty and equality in the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Rather than rejecting an America that discriminated against a particular race, the movement fought for America to fulfill its own universal promise that “all men are created equal.” The Civil Rights Movement worked for American principles within American institutions rather than against them.