Driving the Opening Wedge: The 1948 Anti-Lynching Bill and the Fracturing of the Solid South

Andrew J. Cerise
The expansion of civil rights for Black Americans was a crucial driver of the South’s political realignment with a national conservative movement. As early as 1948, Southern opposition to civil rights, fueled by President Harry Truman’s civil rights agenda, created the first cracks in the “Solid South.” Of the three major civil rights legislative initiatives in 1948, the anti-lynching bill has remained the most unstudied and underappreciated by historians as compared to its anti-poll tax...
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