Further Research: Hidden Voices of Textbook Opposition

With the lost cause narrative being the largest and most influential messaging that the UDC in the CofC Vocalized.  Revisionist textbooks were commonplace throughout the South. There happened to be a correlation between conservative textbook approval and civil rights movements. An example of this is, in “1948 Virginia had what could be considered a fairly progressive social studies program based upon adoption of the core curriculum. Social and political forces in the state, however, would soon bring a reversal in the type of instruction encouraged by the State Depart of Education.”[1].

This correlation I think is worth further research. Focusing hidden voices of the group’s criticism, mainly on the opinions of the African American community. One example of criticism is a newspaper article written by The Tribune which is an African American Newspaper from Roanoke V.A. The article itself is about the recent election of a new governor. The reason why this is an interesting article is in the article they are very critical of the Virginia senator Byrd, who was the one responsible for the 1950 textbook commission. The article states “In the first place, the average Negro has built up a resentment to the very name of Senator Byrd. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, they express that resentment by voting for the opposition”[2].

African Americans where effected by this messaging not only through the implementation of textbook but the influence of the white southern cultural heritage that is still prevalent today. The effect of altered education and views on heritage groups like the UDC are not often written about from the perspective of the targeted group. I believe it is important to research these opinions because any vocal resistance to the group’s ideology will prove that not everyone accepted the false narratives the group imposed.

[1] Eichelman, Fred R. "The Government as Textbook Writer: A Case History." The Phi Delta Kappan 57, no. 7 (1976): 456-58. Accessed November 8, 2020. http://www.jstor.org/stable/20298323.

[2] Alexander, F.E. “Thomas B. Stanley Elected Governor.” THE TRIBUNE. November 7, 1953.


Further Research: Hidden Voices of Textbook Opposition