Call for Papers (Edited Book): Youth in the Movement: High School Student Activism in Postwar America since 1945

Dara Walker's picture



Many of the social and political transformations that took shape in postwar America developed out of the organizing and strategic collaborations forged by youth. For more than two decades now, scholars have turned to the archives and oral histories to demonstrate the importance of college students in these transformations. And yet, college students were not the only young people at the time who sought justice in the United States. As a new generation of scholarship has come to reveal, high school students were also involved in the struggle for social justice.

How does our understanding of post-social movements change when we place young people like Barbara Johns and Claudette Colvin at the center of these narratives? What youth-oriented approaches to struggle is rendered visible when we see the Northern High School Walkout of 1966, the L.A. Blowouts of 1968, and the youth-centered antiwar protests of the early 1970s as critical moments in the development of post-war transformations?

Historians Alexander Hyres, Dara Walker, and Jon Hale invite contributions to this edited volume which aims to illuminate the contours of high school activism in post-World War II America. This volume will situate high school activism within the larger political, social, and economic milieus during the latter half of the twentieth century. In particular, it will place activism within the context of the Black Freedom Struggle and related movements such as the Chicano Movement, Red Power, the New Left, and the Feminist Movements. In doing so, it expands the previous geographic and chronological bounds of research to spotlight activism by high school students of color throughout the United States. The editors are interested in exploring several questions, including: How, and in what ways, did race, gender, and class intersect with student activism? How did educators both influence, support, and/or undermine the activism of students? What were the consequences of the students’ activism? How does student activism intersect with the rise of the school-to-prison pipeline?

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • New historiographical considerations

  • Methodological questions, such as the use of oral histories and public history

  • Strategic collaborations across student groups

  • Origins and political organizing of racial/ethnic student groups

  • The role of place and space in the development of youth organizing

  • High school activism in traditional schools or school settings

  • High school activism in communities beyond the school

  • High school activism beyond the United States South

  • Gender, sexuality, and student activism

  • Intergenerational organizing traditions and strategies

Guidelines for Submission of Abstracts:

  1. Abstracts should be 500 words in length.

  2. Abstracts should provide an overview of the research topic, sources, and significance.

  3. References should be in accordance with the Chicago-style citation.  

Guidelines for Submission of Chapter Manuscripts:

  1. Submissions should not be under consideration elsewhere. All chapters will go through a peer-reviewed process.

  2. Manuscripts must be between 5000-6000 words, double-spaced, and typed in Times New Roman with font size 12

  3. Include a 150-word abstract

  4. The chapter should include:

i. Title

ii. Name, mailing address and email address of the author, and affiliation

iii. Abstract with 4‐8 keywords

iv. Contributors should use the Chicago-style citation. 


  • Deadline for abstract submission: September 1, 2019

  • Notifications will be sent out the week of September 30, 2019

  • Chapters will be due to editors Fall 2020

  • Questions and submissions should be sent to:

Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns.  


Thanks for your consideration,

Dr. Dara Walker, Dr. Alexander Hyres, and Dr. Jon Hale