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Little Rock on Trial: Cooper V. Aaron and School Desegregation (07 Edition)

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Americans were riveted to their television sets in 1957, when a violent mob barred black students from entering Little Rock's Central High School and faced off against paratroopers sent by a reluctant President Eisenhower. That set off a firestorm of protest throughout the nation and ultimately led to the Supreme Court's landmark decision in Cooper v. Aaron, reaffirming Brown v. Board of Education's mandate for school integration "with all deliberate speed" and underscoring the supremacy of federal and constitutional authority over state law.

Noted scholar Tony Freyer, arguably our nation's top authority on this subject, now provides a concise, lucid, and eminently teachable summary of that historic case and shows that it paved the way for later civil rights victories. He chronicles how the Little Rock school board sought court approval to table integration efforts and how the black community brought suit against the board's watered-down version of compliance. The board's request was denied by a federal appeals court and taken to the Supreme Court, where the unanimous ruling in Cooper reaffirmed federal law-but left in place the maddening ambiguities of "all deliberate speed."

While other accounts have focused on the showdown on the schoolhouse steps, Freyer takes readers into the courts to reveal the centrality of black citizens' efforts to the origins and outcome of the crisis. He describes the work of the Little Rock NAACP—with its Legal Defense Fund led by Thurgood Marshall and Wiley Branton—in defining the issues and abandoning gradualism in favor of direct confrontation with the segregationist South. He also includes the previously untold account of Justice William Brennan's surprising influence upon Justice Felix Frankfurter's controversial concurring opinion, which preserved his own "deliberate speed" wording from Brown.

With Cooper, the "well morticed high wall" of segregation had finally cracked. As the most important test of Brown, which literally contained the means to thwart its own intent, it presaged the civil rights movement's broader nonviolent mass action combining community mobilization and litigation to finally defeat Jim Crow. It was not only a landmark decision, but also a turning point in America's civil rights struggle.

Synopsis:

Examines the first—and most important—test of the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board decision in which nine African American high school students, suing to be allowed into an all-white school, found themselves in the middle of a tense standoff between state and federal authorities, ultimately paving the way for the civil rights movement.

Table of Contents

Editors' Preface

Acknowledgments

Introduction

1. The Little Rock NAACP Decision to Sue, 1954-1956

2. Aaron v. Cooper: Rights at Bay, 1956-1957

3. The Crisis Erupts, 1957

4. Cooper v. Aaron: Delay Won and Appealed, 1957-1958

5. The Cooper v. Aaron Opinions: Unanimity and Division, 1958

6. Protean Precedent after 1958

Epilogue

Chronology

Bibliographic Essay

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780700615360
Subtitle:
Cooper v. Aaron and School Desegregation
Author:
Freyer, Tony A.
Publisher:
University Press of Kansas
Subject:
Civil Rights
Subject:
United States - 20th Century
Subject:
Educational
Subject:
Legal History
Subject:
Segregation in education
Subject:
African Americans--Civil rights
Subject:
Law : General
Edition Description:
Paperback
Series:
Landmark Law Cases & American Society
Publication Date:
20070906
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.37x6.59x.85 in. .81 lbs.

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Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » African American Studies » Civil Rights Movement
» History and Social Science » Law » Civil Liberties and Human Rights
» History and Social Science » Law » General
» History and Social Science » Law » Legal Guides and Reference
» History and Social Science » US History » 20th Century » General

Little Rock on Trial: Cooper V. Aaron and School Desegregation (07 Edition) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 288 pages University Press of Kansas - English 9780700615360 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Examines the first—and most important—test of the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board decision in which nine African American high school students, suing to be allowed into an all-white school, found themselves in the middle of a tense standoff between state and federal authorities, ultimately paving the way for the civil rights movement.
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