Share the Struggle
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The struggle and sacrifice for civil
rights in America is witnessed in
this compelling story. The Right to
Dream recreates a student's
coming of age as an African
American in Mississippi during the
1950's and 1960's. This program
illuminates the issues of civil
rights, leading audiences to
understand how the fight against
prejudice has shaped our history.
5th Grade through
Martin Luther King
Theatre / Drama
Media / Television -
The Right to Dream is told either from the point of view of a young woman (Ruby) or a
young man (Raymond). Ruby/Raymond Hollis is a young African American growing up in
a small town in Mississippi on the brink of the American Civil Rights movement, the child
of a World War II African American soldier and a domestic worker who is respected in
their small Mississippi town.
Early on, Raymond/Ruby feels and sees the daily impact of racism. As a child, her/his
best friend is a young white neighbor to the house where her/his mother works—until
they are separated and forbidden to see each other. Ruby/Raymond is then introduced
to leaders like Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King, Jr., showing him/her that something
different may be possible for blacks in America.
Dedicated to joining these leaders, Raymond/Ruby receives a scholarship to attend
Tougaloo College. Raymond/Ruby begins his/her involvement in the movement when
s/he leads a sit-in at a local lunch counter. When friends are hurt, and civil rights
workers are killed, Ruby's/Raymond's dedication to creating an equal society is tested.
But s/he becomes a part of SNCC (Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee) and is
a participant in the voter registration drive, the March on Washington, Freedom
Summer and the March from Selma to Montgomery.
Ruby/Raymond and the civil rights workers are rewarded with the passage of the 1965
Voting Rights Act—but Ruby/Raymond is dedicated to continuing the fight against
racism and raising America above intolerance.
Written by Rachel Atkins