Influential Leaders Of The Civil Rights Movement

1016 Words May 15th, 2015 5 Pages
Since ministers from the black church rose as formal charismatic leaders in the movement, there was not a situation in which a woman could be a charismatic leader. Ella Baker, highly critical of King, the charismatic leadership in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and of charismatic leadership in general, believed that group-centered leadership was the answer. She believed that through combined effort and inner strength much could be accomplished by the people. To Baker, charismatic leadership was a single-leader centered model that emphasized power and responsibility in a single leader. Group-centered leadership focused on the masses of ordinary people to find value in their own resources and change their collective condition. She believed that natural resistance already exists within the masses and that no person wants to be set up. To her, “strong people did not need strong leaders.” The gender bias found in relation to leadership in the civil rights movement often excludes African-American women’s contributions as being of less importance and prominence; however, in hindsight informal leaders were on equal level with formal leaders and bridge leaders served an important function resulting from exclusion.
The Women It was not until after the second wave of feminism that women activists began to speak about their gendered experiences in the civil rights movement. The second wave of feminism gave African-American women an opportunity to speak out about…
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