Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics


Textbook Brouhaha

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American Politics | Journalism Studies


At a time of new controversy over reading material used in Mississippi public schools, Charles W. Eagles’ 2017 book dealing with an epic battle over a state history textbook in the 1970s is the subject of this Overby Center for Southern Journalism and Politics program. Eagles, who retired after more than three decades as a history professor at Ole Miss, talks about “Civil Rights Culture Wars” with K.B. Melear, a professor in the school’s education department. The book deals with a struggle with the politically-controlled state textbook commission to win approval for a new history textbook that covered the civil rights movement, poverty, and issues confronting women, workers and native Americans in Mississippi. The issues had been ignored by textbooks in use in the state.

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