Not One Committee, but Several
This chapter by Peter Ling shows that SNCC ceased to be a primarily student-run organization after 1962, shed its philosophical commitment to nonviolence by 1966, and had always experienced tension between its coordination role and its cultural preference for field office independence. By examining attendance lists at major SNCC meetings from 1960 through 1964, it then traces a shifting organizational membership to argue that there were several SNCCs rather than one. In its assessment, SNCC's evolution reflected a process not of individuals changing through experience of movement activism but of different individuals exerting influence at different times. Challenging conventional understanding of the internal stresses resulting from the influx of student volunteers for the Freedom Summer project, it suggests that the newcomers only aggravated existing volatility and inchoateness.
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