Reflecting on the Dreams of the Chicago Freedom Movement and Their Pursuit for Fair Housing

Part of the What's Next? event series
Overhead view of rows of houses
Event Date & Time
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 - A recording of this event will be shared - 

The 1960s Chicago Freedom Movement, one of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s most under analyzed forms of racial protest, is a time period worth reexamining. Chicago was one of the most residentially segregated cities in the country in the mid 1960s. Black home buyers were effectively barred from predominantly white neighborhoods. Through organizing and protest the Chicago Freedom Movement advocated for “open housing” – the right for Black home buyers to purchase anywhere they wish. Dr. King and his team would send large numbers of Black people into suburban real estate offices to “test” whether or not the real estate agent would make properties available for them to view or not. They aimed to uncover discriminatory practices which were confirmed time and time again. 

While we have made progress since the Chicago Freedom Movement and the passage of the Fair Housing Act in1968, this panel aims to reflect on what has changed since Martin Luther King Jr. and his fellow organizers piloted testing to prove discriminatory practices were persisting and perhaps what still needs to change.

Following the virtual roundtable discussion, audience members will be able to submit questions for the panel to consider. 



  • Dr. Brittany Lewis, Founder & CEO of Research in Action and Sr. Research Associate at CURA (‘15 PhD, feminist studies)


What's Next? Roundtable Series

The College of Liberal Arts is hosting a series of roundtable discussions with community leaders and advocates that ask "What's Next for the Dream?" These discussions will explore where we are nationally and locally with regard to some of the demands  put forward at the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs & Freedom where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his historic "I Have A Dream" speech. 

Learn more about the What's Next? series

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