Education in Crisis

Education and Democracy

Strom Thurmond

Senator Strom Thurmond, originator of the Southern Manifesto.

Education became a platform for both attacking and defending ideals, sometimes being used by both sides of the debate to prove their divergent points.

Proponents of desegregation employed notions of a democratic culture as arguments for the desegregation of schools. The majority opinion in Brown v. Board of Education referred to the work of psychologist Kenneth Clark. Clark conceptualized prejudice as a symptom of psychological maladjustment.

Simultaneously the critique of conformism was employed as argument against desegregation. The Southern Manifesto, a pamphlet against desegregation, attacked integrationist attempts as unacceptable external control over public schools, using the same model and logic as efforts to fight the perceived communist threat in public schools.