Share |

From Plessy to Brown: Resolving the Promise of Equal Protection under the Law

The goal of this topic is to use primary historical documents to facilitate discussion and civil discourse on topics that once led to—and in some cases continue to lead to—sharp schisms in society. By exploring previous moments of division, the conversations both highlight our history and provide a framework for creating a civil discourse around currently divisive issues.

This conversation focuses on questions of equality and separation between Reconstruction following the Civil War, and the Civil Rights Movement of the mid-20th century. Its primary bookends are the Supreme Court decisions in Plessy v. Ferguson and Brown v. Board of Education, the cases that solidified and tore down the Jim Crow doctrine of  “separate, but equal” respectively.