About the Author

Jenice L. View is Assistant Professor of Initiatives in Educational Transformation Program at George Mason University. Her research focuses on the critical teaching and learning of history, critical pedagogy in teacher professional development, how the learning of history impacts youth voice and civic engagement, white teacher consciousness, and the use of the arts and arts integration.

Modern Civil Rights Movement

Documents from Secret Government Spy Operations


The Mississippi Sovereignty Commission was a state-funded agency that spied on civil rights activists and infiltrated organizations beginning in 1956. All levels of state government were involved in gathering information on the activities of all people working to secure civil, human, and voting rights for African Americans and poor whites in Mississippi. The Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO) of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also engaged in spying on civil rights organizations and activists, ordering FBI agents to "expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize" the activities of these movements and their leaders.


"Sovereignty Commission Online Agency History." From the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Digital Collections. Accessed August 14, 2010.

Wolf, Paul. Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). From International Rights Universal Rights. 2008. Accessed May 1, 2012.

"COINTELPRO FBI Domestic Intelligence Activities." From What Really Happened. 2010. Accessed May 1, 2012.