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I Am a Man Pin

$12.00

$10.80 Members

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PRODUCT: I Am a Man Pin
MADE: United States of America
SIZE: 1.75” high x 1.25" wide
MATERIALS: Rubber, soft enamel
DESIGNER: Peter Gaona
Memphis sanitation workers, majority of them African-American, went out to strike on February 12, 1968, demanding recognition for their union, better wages and safer working conditions after two trash handlers were killed by a malfunctioning garbage truck. As the strike dragged on through March, with the Memphis mayor refusing to negotiate, it gained national attention. As they marched, striking workers carried copies of a poster declaring “I AM A MAN,” a statement that recalled a question abolitionist posed more than 100 years earlier, “Am I not a man and a brother?”.

Martin Luther King Jr. joined the cause, speaking to a crowd of 6,000 in late March and returning on April 3 to deliver one of his most famous speeches, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.” King placed the strike in a larger context, declaring, “The masses of people are rising up. And wherever they are assembled today, whether they are in Johannesburg, South Africa; Nairobi, Kenya; Accra, Ghana; New York City; Atlanta, Georgia; Jackson, Mississippi; or Memphis Tennessee — the cry is always the same “We want to be free.“ King was assassinated at Memphis’ Lorraine Motel the next night, just one day before a massive rally was planned.

Two pin back with black rubber clutches.

Handmade in Chicago. From Reformed School.
All proceeds from the MCA Store support the exhibitions and programs of the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.