What is the meaning of protest in "Northern Protest"?Protest is a statement of disapproval of or disstisfaction with the social, cultural, economic and political aspects involved in the...

What is the meaning of protest in "Northern Protest"?

Protest is a statement of disapproval of or disstisfaction with the social, cultural, economic and political aspects involved in the functioning of society.

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sullymonster eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As you have defined the term protest in your question, I am going to identify how the author specifically addresses the idea of protest in his book.  If you need the actual definition of "protest", consider posting another question.

In this historical text, Ralph analyzes the protests organized by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Chicago in the 1960's.  King was already hard at work protesting the inequality suffered by African-Americans, and the Civil Rights Movement was well on its way to exacting some tangible change.  In the late 1950's, King had organized a number of non-violent protests in which citizens refused to comply with unfair laws or in which they gathered to express their concerns in a public place (such as the March on Washington, 1963).

However, when King took his protests from the South to Chicago, Ralph claims that King fails to accept he is working a different culture.  Ralph's analysis insists that protest can only exist if an individual understands what he is protesting against.  In Chicago, King did not understand.  He assumed the problems were the same as had existed in the South, and did not understand that the inequality and the prejudice had different sources.  This is why, according to Ralph, the work King did in the North was not as successful as in the South.

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Northern Protest

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