ABOUT THE PROJECT
Project Director Gregg Ivers discusses the origins of the Julian Bond Oral History Project
The Julian Bond Oral History Project is a comprehensive website dedicated to the work and career of Julian Bond from 1960-1968 and the broader Southern civil rights movement.
The interviews were conducted primarily by Gregg Ivers, Professor of Government at American University and Project Director. These oral histories document the rise of Julian Bond primarily from the period of 1960-1968, first as a student at Morehouse College and one of the leaders of the Atlanta student movement to his rise to prominence as a national figure by 1968. The individuals interviewed discuss their relationship with and impressions of Julian Bond from different points in his early career, including his work with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) from 1960-1966, his historic election to the Georgia state legislature in 1965 that resulted in multiple lawsuits and a notable Supreme Court decision before he was permitted to take his seat in 1967 and his role in breaking the whites-only delegation of Georgia to the 1968 Democratic Convention. The interviews also include discussions of Bond’s legacy as a civil rights activist, educator and public figure.
The individuals interviewed for this project also tell their own stories, some of which have never been fully documented by academics and journalists, about coming into the civil rights movement – their experiences that motivated their decisions, their approach to social change and the social, political and legal strategies developed and utilized to achieve those goals.
Visitors to this site are also encouraged to Learn About the Civil Rights Movement by viewing short videocasts that highlight key individuals and moments in the civil rights movement, with links to resources that provide additional information. Our hope is that these videocasts and additional resources will encourage individuals to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the civil rights movement.
Finally, the Student Voices portal features oral history interviews by students of key figures past and present in the civil rights and other social justice movements. On occasion, students will be interviewed about their own experiences and what formed their social and political consciousness.
We hope that you find these resources illuminating and useful in inquiries into the life and work of Julian Bond, the Southern civil rights movement and contemporary issues in civil rights and social justice.