SNCC Digital Gateway: learn from the past, organize the future, make democracy work

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During the 1960s, young activists in the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC - pronounced "snick") united with local people in the Deep South to build a grassroots movement for change that empowered Black communities and transformed the nation. Since 2013, veteran SNCC activists have been collaborating with Duke University Libraries and the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University to build the SNCC Digital Gateway: Learn from the Past, Organize for the Future, Make Democracy Work (snccdigital.org), a documentary website that tells the history of the Civil Rights Movement from the perspective of the activists themselves. With generous support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the SNCC Digital Gateway documents SNCC's work building democracy from the ground up and makes those experiences and strategies accessible to activists, educators, and engaged citizens today. It allows veteran activists to pass on the "how-to's" of the freedom movement-- the knowledge and tactics of grassroots organizing -- to the next generation. Throughout the project, SNCC partners have been central in shaping the telling of SNCC's story. This unprecedented collaboration between activists and the academy has revealed important insights into forging relationships between universities and community partners, relationships built on equity, mutual respect, trust, and a common vision.


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