Civil Rights Coursework

Question 1.

Source A is a description of attempts to follow through school segregtion after the Brown Decision. Source A suggests that the people in Little Rock were all racist and believed strongly in segregation, it suggests that the crowd were extremely angry that a black girl was being sent to their school. From Source A we can tell that the people in Little Rock hated the fact that a black girl was attending their school, we can tell this because alot of hostility is shown in Source A. The crowd seems to be mainly adults and they are being very hostile towards her, even though she is only a little girl, the guard at the front of the school even pointed his gun at her in a threatening manner, ‘he raised his bayonet.’

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Source A suggests that there was a lot of tension at the school, people were shouting abuse at Elizabeth Eckford. She seems to be alone in the mob, she has no-one around her to support her, ‘I tried to see a friendly face in the mob’, this statement shows that she didn’t know anyone there at all, she must have been very lonely. She would have felt very afraid because everyone around her shouted abuse at her, ‘Lynch her! Lynch her!’ and an old woman spat at her, this shows that people were very serious about the issue. Even though Elizabeth Eckford is clearly being verbally abused and treated unfairly she puts her head up high, she doesn’t seem to show anyone that she is afraid, she acts extremely composed for someone in such a dangerous situation, I believe that source A shows that she is extremely brave. Elizabeth Eckford is only trying to get into school and she is being abused and mistreated, she has done nothing to deserve how they are treating her.

In conclusion I believe that although the law told the people of Little Rock that Elizabeth Eckford had the right to go to the Littlerock Highschool, they could not accept the situation and acted in a very unfair manner towards her, this proves that the Southern states would not accept the fact that segregation was not fair and that blacks and whites should be equal.

Question 2.

The evidence in Sources B and C support the evidence in source A, the issues in the sources are extremely similar, the similarities of these sources are shown in the following paragraph.

Source B supports source A because it proves that there was a crowd outside Little Rock Highschool, ‘The crowd’ also Source B seems to suggest that the crowd was mainly fomed of adults, which also supports the point made in Source A. Also source B shows the hysteria because it says, ‘a group of six girls…started to shriek and wail. “The negroes are in our school” they cried.’ this shows that the crowd panicked and did not agree at all with the fact that black and white people should be equal, this supports source A because it proves that people were hysterical as was suggested in Source A. Source B also shows that the crowd were angry and verbally abusive towards Elizabeth Eckford, ‘The crowd now let out a roar of rage’, this supports the point that was made in Source A, the crowd was angry and abusive.

The crowd were extreme about the situation, ‘women cried hysterically’ this shows that situation matters immensly to the crowd and they were very dramatic. Source B is from an article and most likely supported Elizabeth Eckford because it was an article from the New York Times which was a paper from the Northern states and at the time of this situation the people of the Northern states decided that they believed that it was time for equality so they most likely disagreed with the actions of the people in Little Rock.

Source C supports source A in every aspect, it shows the guards in the background of the picture, this shows that there were guards there that tried to stop Elizabeth Eckford from entering the school, therefore supporting the facts in Source A. A large crowd of people can be seen gathered around Elizabeth Eckford, the crowd seems to be following her, shouting abuse at her and they all look extremely angry, this shows that she had no support around her and the crowd was indeed abusive, as was suggested in Source A. Source C also shows Elizabeth Eckford walking into school with her head up high, she seems to be ignoring everyone around her, this shows that she is extremely brave because everyone around her is being abusive and she is just walking away, this photograph of Elizabeth Eckford proves that she is a very strong and brave individual, especially for a girl of her age.

In conclusion I believe that Sources B (an article from a newspaper) and C (a photograph which could have possibly been taken by a reporter) fully support Elizabeth Eckford’s recolections of events in Source A, they prove that she is telling the truth about what happened at Little Rock Highschool in September 1957.

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