Date of Award
Amidst the upheaval of American society in the 1960s, the University of Mississippi’s administration found itself in a precarious position. A long-standing institution that prided itself on its ties to the Old South, the university was being challenged by integrationists and liberal notions of equality and social justice. The university was forced to decide between abetting the alumni that padded university pockets and the tides of change that were rippling through the university campus. Their main way of combatting this was through the surveilling of students and the vetting of potential guest speakers who may spread “controversial ideas.” While students tended to be in favor of allowing anyone on campus to speak, university officials and alumni saw this as a potential threat against the Mississippi “way of life.” As a means of appeasing overbearing alumni and state government officials, the university began taking measures to limit free speech on campus, thus lessening the spread of liberal ideas. This thesis provides an in-depth look into the actions the university took to limit free speech on campus between 1955 and 1970.
Grisham, Neale, "Who Has a Voice: Issues of Free Speech at the University of Mississippi from 1955-1970" (2020). Honors Theses. 1380.
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