Atlanta Compromise

The Atlanta Cotton States and International Exposition Speech was an address on the topic of race relations given by black leader Booker T. Washington on September 18, 1895.

The title "Atlanta Compromise" was given to the speech by Booker T. Washington, who believed it was insufficiently committed to the pursuit of social and political equality for Blacks. On the one hand, Washington warned white America of the consequences of ignoring racial abuse or "efforts to curtail the fullest growth of the Negro." He said that "we shall constitute one third of the ignorance and crime of the south or one-third of its intelligence and progress. One-third to the business and prosperity...or we shall prove a veritable body of death, stagnating, depressing, retarding every effort to advance the body politic." However, Washington also argued that "The wisest among my race understand that the agitation of questions of social equality is the extremist folly, and that progress in the enjoyment of all the privileges that will come to us must be the result of severe and constant struggle rather than of artificial forcing."

Presented before a predominantly white audience at the Cotton States and International Exposition (later the site of Piedmont Park) in Atlanta, Georgia, the speech [ [http://www.africawithin.com/bios/booker/atlanta_compromise.htm Text of Atlanta Compromise Speech] ] has been recognized as one of the most important and influential speeches in American history. [cite web | title = Atlanta Compromise Speech | publisher = New Georgia Encyclopedia | url = http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?id=h-2554 | accessdate = 2007-06-08 ]

Washington began with a call to the blacks, who comprised one third of the Southern population, to join the world of work. He declared that the South was where blacks were given their chance, as opposed to the North, especially in the worlds of commerce and industry. He told the white audience that rather than rely on the immigrant population arriving at the rate of a million people a year, they should hire some of the nation's eight million blacks. He praised blacks' loyalty, fidelity and love in service to the white population, but warned that they could be a great burden on society if oppression continued, stating outright that the progress of the South was inherently tied to the treatment of blacks and protection of their liberties.

He addressed the inequality between commercial legality and social acceptance, proclaiming that "The opportunity to earn a dollar in a factory just now is worth infinitely more than the opportunity to spend a dollar in an opera house." However, Washington also endorsed segregation by claiming that blacks and whites could exist as separate fingers of a hand.

References

*cite web|url=http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/39/|title=Booker T. Washington Delivers the 1895 Atlanta Compromise Speech|work=History Matters|publisher=George Mason University|accessdate=2006-01-30


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Atlanta Compromise — Classic statement on race relations by Booker T. Washington, made in a speech at the Atlanta Exposition (1895). He asserted that vocational education, which gave blacks a chance for economic security, was more valuable than social equality or… …   Universalium

  • Atlanta — /at lan teuh/, n. a city in and the capital of Georgia, in the N part. 425,022. * * * I City (pop., 2000: 416,474; metro. area pop.: 4,112,198), capital of Georgia, U.S. Lying in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Atlanta is Georgia s… …   Universalium

  • compromise — compromiser, n. compromisingly, adv. compromissary /kom prom euh ser ee/, adj. /kom preuh muyz /, n., v., compromised, compromising. n. 1. a settlement of differences by mutual concessions; an agreement reached by adjustment of conflicting or… …   Universalium

  • Missouri Compromise — The United States in 1819. The Missouri Compromise prohibited slavery in the unorganized territory of the Great Plains (dark green) and permitted it in Missou …   Wikipedia

  • Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport — Infobox Airport name = Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport IATA = ATL ICAO = KATL FAA = ATL type = Public owner = City of Atlanta operator = Department of Aviation city served = Atlanta, Georgia location = College Park, East Point,… …   Wikipedia

  • Battle of Atlanta — Coordinates: 33°44′45″N 84°20′56″W …   Wikipedia

  • United States — a republic in the N Western Hemisphere comprising 48 conterminous states, the District of Columbia, and Alaska in North America, and Hawaii in the N Pacific. 267,954,767; conterminous United States, 3,022,387 sq. mi. (7,827,982 sq. km); with… …   Universalium

  • Booker T. Washington — Born Booker Taliaferro Washington April 5, 1856(1856 04 05) Hale s Ford, Virginia, USA …   Wikipedia

  • Timeline of African-American Civil Rights Movement — African American topics History  Atlantic slave trade · Maafa Slavery in the United States Military history of African Americans …   Wikipedia

  • Piedmont Park — Infobox nrhp | name =Piedmont Park nrhp type = caption =Piedmont Park. location= Atlanta, Georgia area = built =1895 architect= Joseph Forsyth Johnson;John Charles Olmsted; Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.; added = May 13, 1976 governing body = Local… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.