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Brown v. Board of Education: A Fight for Simple Justice

2016 | Holiday House


Award-winning author Susan Goldman Rubin chronicles the fascinating story behind the Brown v. Board of Education's landmark Supreme Court decision.


In 1954, one of the most significant Supreme Court decisions of the twentieth Century aimed to end school segregation in the United States. Although known as Brown v. Board of Education, the ruling applied not just to the case of Linda Carol Brown, an African American third grader refused entry to an all-white Topeka, Kansas school, but to cases involving children in South Carolina, Delaware, Virginia, and Washington, DC. Here is the story of the many people who stood up to racial inequality, some risking significant danger and hardship, and of careful strategizing by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).


Praise for Brown v. Board

School Library Journal:

In a highly readable narrative, this title tells the story of the monumental 1954 Supreme Court decision that mandated desegregation in public schools in the United States. In short, comprehensible chapters, Rubin describes the development of five individual cases as they were strategically fought and often lost at the district level. Eventually all five appealed together to the highest court of the nation. The book demystifies this legal journey and puts a face to it by profiling the young student plaintiffs, their brave and determined parents, and, in particular, Thurgood Marshall, the lead lawyer for the NAACP and the driving force behind the legal struggle for desegregation. These personal stories, as well as other interesting details and descriptions, make for an approachable and easily digestible account that succeeds in bringing history to life. The work ends with an epilogue looking at the impact of desegregation on today's schools. This title is fastidiously well researched, and Rubin backs up her story with thorough summaries of each court case, the full text of the Fourteenth Amendment, and Chief Justice Earl Warren's opinion on the decision. Relevant black-and-white photographs, many from the NAACP's collections, are peppered throughout. VERDICT An engaging and thorough take on an important topic, this is a first purchase for middle school U.S. history collections. -Clara Hendricks, Cambridge Public Library, MA