Speaking Out: The Civil Rights Movement, 1950-1964
Author: Kevin Supples
Pages: 40
Publisher/Date: National Geographic/2005
ISBN: 0792283597
Age Levels: 9-12

Book Review

Note: National Geographic’s Crossroads America™ is a series exploring specific periods and events from American history. The individual books are lavishly illustrated with both black-and-white and full-color photographs. They offer detailed, easily accessible information for report writers and history buffs.

Author Kevin Supples offers a straightforward, highly readable account of the struggles and successes of the civil rights movement from 1950 until 1964. The book begins with an introduction to America’s "Divided Society" of the 1950s.

The text is divided into four short chapters which include the important turning points in the civil rights movement as well as snapshots in words and pictures of the personalities involved. Well-known figures such as Rosa Parks, Thurgood Marshall, and Martin Luther King, Jr. are mentioned, as are lesser-known, but important individuals, such as labor leader A. Philip Randolph.

Sprinkled throughout are sidebars titled "In Their Own Words" which feature well-chosen quotes from the leaders of the movement. Also included is a two-page spread titled "Primary Sources" which features news photographs of the time. Another two-page spread titled "Points of View" shows the opposing viewpoints of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X with regard to non-violence as a method of achieving civil rights.

Appended is a brief glossary and index.

Reviewed by the teachers at Education Oasis
©2005 Education Oasis http://www.educationoasis.com

About the Author

Writer and editor Kevin Supples has contributed to a variety of books for children. His past topics include ancient Africa, medieval Europe, and Native American history. He was first inspired by stories of the Civil Rights Movement when he and his sister were children. Mr. Supples lives near Boston, Massachusetts.