Civil Rights Photograph

The photograph that I took captures a moment in which two Civil Rights protestors are being constricted to a corner, more specifically students of the SNCC within Southern Carolina. The slogan seen in the poster ‘We Shall Overcome’ was considered the anthem of the Civil Rights Movement ; as it was adapted from the struggles of the labor movements and brought to a rally for the SNCC in South Carolina, from which it spread.  The scene depcited in the photo is particulary showing a scene where the two students dressed in all black, to show solidarity, are being forced away and silenced against a corner in the midst of their protests. It is an action shot, expressing the chaos in the moment as the viewer can make out a sort of stick or baton (representation of the police and their violent approach to black protestors), which alludes the possibility of violence to come upon the individuals in this scene. The woman in the foreground is clearly holding up her hands in a show of compliance and fear to the person behind the baton. This is in contrast with her counterpart, as he is still standing resolute holding the sign ‘We Shall Overcome’ in defiance of the authority they are both facing.  The photo was taken against a wall and in an enclosed space to show the attempt made by white supremacists and those in support of segregation and discrimination, to silence the voices which were against their ideals of ‘seperate but equal’. The image is from a bird’s eye view, to show the perspective of those protesting from a policeman, or even a white man’s place symbolizing their authority and power, thus the reason for why the camera is looming above the two people. Furthermore, it is in black and white so to fit with the time frame (1960’s) , as well as sets a somber tone signifying to the viewer the message behind the picture………..

The SNCC embraced non violent approaches while advocating for their rights and for a change. Their refusal to fight back the forces opposing them brought national attention with which they were able to showcase their efforts on a larger scale. The SNCC’s emergence as a force in the southern civil rights movement came largely through the involvement of students in the 1961 Freedom Rides. The Congress of Racial Equality initially sponsored the Freedom Rides that began in May 1961, but segregationists viciously attacked riders traveling through Alabama. By the time the Interstate Commerce Commission began enforcing the ruling mandating equal treatment in interstate travel in November 1961, SNCC was immersed in voter registration efforts in McComb, Mississippi, and a desegregation campaign in Albany, Georgia, known as the Albany Movement. Continuing to advocate and fight for the overturning of segregation in the South and giving young African Americans a stronger voice in the civil rights movement in America.

Blog Post #3

League of Nations


As the WWI came to an end and the Big Four established the Peace Conference, one of the ideas to surface from it was the League of Nations. The original intentions of the League was to create a group of nations, from which they’d rely on one another and be given the task of bringing about world peace. Through the use of mostly collective security, these nations would create a trust or interdependencey that essentially would be the foundations for world unity. The importance of this failed organization, is the understanding that leaders are able to take now, from the previous mistakes made that are what didn’t allow for the League to live up to it’s full potential. Such as the establishment of some sort of military dependence in times of confusion or tension, to legitimize the capability of the League. Although, in today’s context it is commonly referred to as something that brought some sort of change, as it is the misinterpretation of today’s society that the League of Nations was simply an earlier model of the UN. Implying that it was in fact successful to some extent, yet that is not the case. For further understanding, refer to this link, as it provides even more context and insight on this topic.

Blog Post 2

Topic 1: Ypres

Among the battles that resulted during WWI, one of the more significant ones took place on April 22, 1915. When German forces shocked Allied soldiers along the western front by firing more than 150 tons of lethal chlorine gas against two French colonial divisions at Ypres, Belgium. This was the first major gas attack by the Germans, and it devastated the Allied line. The battle of Ypres followed the much more known, Race to the Sea as the Allies fought the Central Powers for power over the coasts and thus for their navy’s. However, one of the greater points of Ypres, was the role the Ottoman Empire played, more specifically modern day Turkey, in coming to the aid of German troops as they continued to fight against the Allies.

The significance of this battle, is not only did it mark the start of yet another warfare being introduced to WWI, as well as a new ally was gained by The Central Powers. The German’s use of chlorine-gas cylinders in the Allies trenches suffocated the French, and shocked the soldiers as the Allies realized the extremity the German’s were willing to take it to. This strayed very far from the traditional warfare that most European Powers originally knew, and as attrition became to become the preferred style of combat with minimal troops, measures were taken, and gases created and released. Furthermore, the joining of Turkey with the Central Powers, was not a vote of the people, but of the new reign and dictatorship labeled as a “Young Turk triumvirate” (Sass 1) according to the website Mental Floss. They took their place with the German’s, and an era of weapons of mass destruction had begun.


Topic 2: Perspectives on war; misinterpretations of the battlefield & propaganda

The men and women who served in the First World War endured some of the most brutal forms of warfare ever known. Millions were sent to fight away from home for extended periods of time, and underwent some of the most terrible physical and emotional experiences. The new technologies available to WWI armies combined with the huge number of men enlisted made the battlefields of this war horrific, deadly and terrifying places. However, from the viewpoint of the leaders and governments through the use of propaganda, WWI is depicted as a battle of pride, and loyalty for one’s country. The population were forced into conscription, although with the use of posters with slogans such as “Don’t wait for the draft, volunteer”, and “Take up the sword of justice“. The idea that the only place to die with honor was on the battlefield was applied and taken up by many soldiers, whom were forced into combat.

The significance of this, is how the glorification of war in actuality can lead to misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the situation and circumstances in which one’s country is under. However it is deliberately done, as nationalism is an ideal that many governments, to this day, rely on to supply the with recruitments for the military to ‘strengthen’ or ‘better’ their country and serve its needs. Allowing the effects and dehumanization, that parallel with being a soldier and witnessing as well as committing atrocities, be left unspoken, but instead emphasizing the respect and glory one will attain only through their service. Regardless, of the fact that most societies this day, as well as during the 19th century deem such gratifications as inhumane as the core of where they are birthed is murder;  which war is exactly that. Simply just on a grand scale.

For further insight: read




Blog Post 1

Treaty of Berlin x Weltpolitik

Over the past few weeks, our History class has been digging in and analyzing the relationships as well as causes of tension and conflict between the European Powers, which led up to World War One. This has led me to discover some further insight, as to how Germany came to became one of the greatest influential powers throughout foreign affairs of the 18th century within Europe.

Otto Von Bismarck was Germany’s Chancellor whose impact is most recognizable between the years of 1860-1890, specifically with the successful unification of Eastern Europe, winning the alliances of Austria-Hungary, Russia, as well as Italy. Germany’s ever growing power was beginning to extend its reaches to the colonies of Africa, leading to the establishment of Weltpolitik by Bismarck. It’s main purpose to denote Germany’s policy abroad within foreign affairs. It can also be referred to as an aggressive take on German diplomacy leading up to World War One. Bismarck wished to practice Weltpolitik, in order to acquire allies as he expected that Germany was on the precipice of war, despite the new Kaiser William II seizing it as an opportunity to boost Germany’s new identity in addition to its industrial expansion.

Although Bismarck saw the colonies as an unnecessary luxury for Germany, the Kaiser sought to join the more influential colonizers of France and Britain, by obtaining their own fraction of Africa. Still to do so without causing unrest between the European Colonizers in the race for territory, he called for a conference, otherwise known as The Treaty of Berlin in 1873; in which the countries could diplomatically discuss and compromise on how to divvy the continent amongst themselves. The main concerns being how to fraction trade routes, more precisely along the Niger and Congo rivers, as well as regulate and decide what spheres of influence each colonizer would control. This led to the division of Africa into a new 50 unnatural and artificial states. The Treaty of Berlin not only gave Germany a lead in the Scramble for Africa as they became one of the main dictators in the rush for territory, as well as it only fortified the idea of Weltpolitik as their economy gained from their great resource; inclusive of economical, social, and political, of the colonies. Germany’s foreign policy based on a model of racial superiority, no longer postulated but proven through the expansion of its territories in other parts of the world, fortifying the indication of the nation’s abilities.


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