Interview with Kenneth Bancroft Clark, April 7 and 15, 1964

Project: Robert Penn Warren Civil Rights Oral History Project

Interview Summary

Dr. Kenneth Bancroft Clark (1914-2005) was an educator, psychologist and civil rights leader. Dr. Clark attended Howard University where he received his Master's Degree in Psychology in 1935 and received his Ph.D. in psychology from Columbia University in 1940. Dr. Clark was a professor at the City College of New York from 1942 until 1975 where he was the first African American to receive a full professorship. In 1946 he and his wife, Dr. Mamie Phipps Clark (1917-1983), founded the Northside Center for Child Development in Harlem and were among founders of the organization Harlem Youth Opportunities Unlimited (HARYOU) in 1962. The Clarks were authors of a valuable study that used dolls to examine the effects of racial discrimination on children. The study was cited by the plaintiffs in the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court case of Brown v. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas in which school segregation laws were overturned. In this interview Dr. Kenneth Clark begins by discussing Reverend Milton Galamison, the process of desegregating the New York City school system, and bussing for school integration. He discusses both African American identity and African identity at length. Dr. Clark provides his views of Malcolm X and the relationship between the past and present for African Americans. Dr. Clark explains the meaning of the term "race" and provides three different perspectives. He also discusses the role of interracial marriage and miscegenation. In addition, Dr. Clark discusses President Abraham Lincoln, Robert E. Lee, and briefly discusses Thomas Jefferson and the philosophy behind the Declaration of Independence. He also provides his thoughts on John Brown and compares him to Jesus Christ. Dr. Clark explains the role of ethics in American government and the role of violence in forcing changes in society. He considers whether the civil rights movement is a revolution and discusses civil rights demonstrations and African American leadership within the civil rights movement. Dr. Clark concludes by discussing the rationality of believing in nonviolence.

Interview Accession

2003oh024_rpwcr013

Interviewee Name

Kenneth Bancroft Clark

Interviewer Name

Robert Penn Warren

Interview Date

1964-04-07

Interview Rights

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Interview Usage

Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Restriction

No Restrictions

Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Add this interview to your cart in order to begin the process of requesting access to a copy of and/or permission to reproduce interview(s). 


Clark, Kenneth Bancroft Interview by Robert Penn Warren. 07 Apr. 1964. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Clark, K.B. (1964, April 07). Interview by R. P. Warren. Robert Penn Warren Civil Rights Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Clark, Kenneth Bancroft, interview by Robert Penn Warren. April 07, 1964, Robert Penn Warren Civil Rights Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt75tb0xq260


Share