Cultural Literacy: Reconstruction

Have you ever read C. Vann Woodward’s monograph The Strange Career of Jim Crow? Martin Luther King, Jr. characterized it as “the historical Bible of the civil rights movement.” Woodward marks the end of Reconstruction as the beginning of Jim Crow, a thesis that I believe remains for many if not most professional historians the final word on the subject.

This Cultural Literacy worksheet on Reconstruction, a two-page document with a reading of nine sentences (including a doozie of a compound in right in the middle of the paragraph) and 12 comprehension questions, covers a lot of ground. Still, if you really want students to understand how local peckerwoods in the South seized power and used it to oppress Americans of African descent for the next eighty years, you’ll need to go to Woodward’s book, or one like it by one of his epigones.

In any event, this document, like just about everything you’ll find on this website, is formatted in Microsoft Word. In other words, you can alter this document to suit your students’ needs.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

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