How Fannie Lou Hamer’s disability informed her fight for voting rights

(From The 19th, July 19, 2023)

Fannie Lou Hamer’s testimony at the 1964 DNC shook the nation and highlighted the fact that many people didn’t realize that Hamer had a disability — or how it played into her activism.

Fannie Lou Hamer is widely heralded as someone whose multiple marginalized identities coalesced to make her a stronger activist. She was a poor Black woman sharecropper from rural Mississippi who became an integral part of the struggle for voting rights in America. Hamer was able to speak about issues that many Black Americans faced as someone who was close to the problem. But often buried in her history is the fact that Hamer, who died in 1977, also spoke as a person who had a disability. 

Read the full story in The 19th