This video from American Masters: Harper Lee: Hey, Boo describes what life was like for those who challenged the system of segregation in the ...
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In this video segment, Andrew Young says that he didn’t need to read To Kill Mockingbird because he already knew the story—that essentially, he lived it. Young not only speaks of his own experience, but he also supports his statement with references to three atrocities committed against black men and civil rights leaders in the South around the time To Kill a Mockingbird was published. In the video, Young highlights the following tragic events leading up to and during the Civil Rights Movement:
- The torture and murder of Emmett Till (1955);
- The murder of Jimmie Lee Jackson (1965);
- The murder of three civil rights activists: Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney.
Ask your students to complete a research assignment on one of these three events in United States History. Be sure students address the following in their research:
- How did this event help galvanize citizens to fight for greater civil rights in this country?
- Provide evidence that describes the event, people involved, time period, location, and the nation’s reaction.
- Include multiple resources to support your claim (e.g., print, video, images).
- According to the video, why didn’t people in Monroeville, Alabama "pay it any mind" when To Kill a Mockingbird came out? What do you think Jane Clark meant by that?
- Mary Tucker said she didn’t know what the white community’s reaction was to the book. Why? What does that tell you about the societal structure of Monroeville?
- Describe the evidence Andrew Young presented to support his statement "it was too close to me."
- In this video, many people comment on the impact and importance of this book. What statement do you find most powerful? Why?
This media asset is from American Masters Harper Lee: Hey, Boo.
For more information on Director Mary Murphy and the Hey, Boo 45-minute classroom edition, visit Mary Murphy & Company.
Harper Lee: Hey, Boo is a production of Mary Murphy & Company, LLC. For more information, visit www.marymurphy.net.
Harper Lee: Hey, Boo is a production of Mary Murphy & Company, LLC.
For more information, visit www.marymurphy.net.