Buy this Article for $7.95

Have a coupon or promotional code? Enter it here:

When you buy this you'll get access to the ePub version, a downloadable PDF, and the ability to print the full article.

Keywords

civil rights, historical research, social justice

 

Authors

  1. Wall, Barbra Mann PhD, RN

Abstract

This historical article considers nursing's work for social justice in the 1960s civil rights movement through the lens of religious sisters and brothers who advocated for racial equality. The article examines Catholic nurses' work with African Americans in the mid-20th century that took place amid the prevailing social conditions of poverty and racial disempowerment, conditions that were linked to serious health consequences. Historical methodology is used within the framework of "bearing witness," a term often used in relation to the civil rights movement and one the sisters themselves employed. Two situations involving nurses in the mid-20th century are examined: the civil rights movement in Selma, Alabama, and the actions for racial justice in Chicago, Illinois. The thoughts and actions of Catholic sister and brother nurses in the mid-20th century are chronicled, including those few sister nurses who stepped outside their ordinary roles in an attempt to change an unjust system entirely.