Plessy v. Ferguson
First Edition   ©1997

Plessy v. Ferguson

A Brief History with Documents

Brook Thomas (University of California, Irvine)

  • ISBN-10: 0-312-13743-5; ISBN-13: 978-0-312-13743-4; Format: Paper Text

In 1896, The Supreme Court's Plessy v. Ferguson decision made legal a system of "separate but equal" racial segregation not overruled until 1954. Using the full text of the Court's opinion, along with a selection of responses to the ruling, Brook Thomas allows students to re-create a context of the complicated debates and conditions in which the decision took place.
"This is an important case for undergraduate study, in large measure because it illuminates the modern debate over affirmative action. Brook Thomas recognizes this connection and helps the reader understand how the rhetoric of race used in Plessy remains influential. The narrative and accompanying historical documents provide a fresh and vivid look at one of the Supreme Court’s most significant and controversial decisions."
— David J. Bodenhamer, Indiana University-Purdue University of Indianapolis