Influence of the American Civil Rights Movement on Australia

This is FREE sample
This text is free, available online and used for guidance and inspiration. Need a 100% unique paper? Order a custom essay.
  • Any subject
  • Within the deadline
  • Without paying in advance
Get custom essay

The American civil rights started in May 1961. It started from 13 volunteers from the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and the student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). The activists started from Washington DC and went through the southern states of Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Missouri and finished to a planned rally in Louisiana. One of the biggest things that have happened in America around that time was Martin Luther Kings ‘I have a dream’ speech which inspired many people, became popular world-wide and it started and led the American Civil Rights movement. Which ended after Martin Luther King’s assassination in the 4th of April 1968.

All of that inspired people in Australia like Charles Perkins. He was born in 1936 in the Alice Springs Telegraph Station Aboriginal Reserve. At the age of 10 it was arranged by his mother to be taken to an Anglican Boys’ to basically make him white. He was really talented at playing soccer which gave a lot of opportunities for him in 1965 he later then became the first Aboriginal person to graduate from university.

He was inspired by the Civil rights that happened in America so he organised the Freedom Ride which happened in 1965 where he was helped by 30 white university students from SAFA (Student Action for Aborigines) who took a bus to New South Wales. The tour was intended to be a study tour of the different race religions in Australia. When the bus was ready to leave (on the 12th of February 1965) Ted Noffs who was the Reverend prayed for their journey and wished for the journey to be successful.

While on their journey they got mistreated by white people. For instance, they had eggs thrown at them, people spat at them and one night they had their bus rammed over by a farmer. The conditions were not pleasant and it took a lot of hard effort and work for their trip to be successful. Until one day Charles Perkins wrote the following quote, ‘What we gave Aboriginal people in the towns we visited was hope. We stirred their imagination, their desire for human rights.’

After that quote was published things changed and gave hope to the Aborigines. It soon became famous, it was written in the newspapers, talked over and over about it on television and Charles Perkins and his group started getting more respected. In the year 1967 Perkins became a national leader for Aboriginal rights and as a role for prosecuting a cause using means without violence. In 1966 he also became Jaycees young man of the year, later on in 1993 he became Aborigine of the year and he was awarded the order of Australia in 1987.

He was also elected to the ATSIC (Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander Commission) were he served until his death in October 2000. Charles Perkins’ legacy followed by Jim Spiegelman who was also a Freedom Rider whose life was dedicated to social justice.


Cite this paper

Influence of the American Civil Rights Movement on Australia. (2021, Feb 05). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/influence-of-the-american-civil-rights-movement-on-australia/



How did the Australian Freedom Rides compare to the US Freedom Rides?
The Australian Freedom Rides were inspired by the US Freedom Rides and both aimed to challenge racial segregation and discrimination. However, the Australian Freedom Rides focused more on indigenous rights and the mistreatment of Aboriginal people, while the US Freedom Rides targeted segregation in public transportation and facilities.
What are the similarities and the differences between the American and the Australian civil rights movements?
There are both similarities and differences between the American and Australian civil rights movements. Both movements fought for the rights of minorities, but the American movement focused on African Americans while the Australian movement fought for the rights of Aboriginal Australians.
What caused the Freedom Rides in Australia?
The Freedom Rides were a response to the poor treatment of Aboriginal people in Australia. The Freedom Riders hoped to bring attention to the issue and force the government to take action.
What was the civil rights movement in Australia?
The American Freedom Rides were a series of bus trips in the early 1960s to challenge racial segregation in the United States.
We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Peter is on the line!

Don't settle for a cookie-cutter essay. Receive a tailored piece that meets your specific needs and requirements.

Check it out