Unit 2 – The Color Line
- 2 audio documents about segregation at school.
VOA Learning English
In this report we learn about two major Supreme Court Rulings. One made segregation legal in schools in America in 1896. It was the Plessy Vs Ferguson Court ruling. This ruling enforced the ‘Seperate but equal’ mentality which saw the school system divided along racial lines.
The other Court Ruing called Brown Vs Board of Education paved the way for the integration of Black kids in schools. This ruling is linked to the story of Linda Brown in Kansas, who had to walk to go to a black school at the other end of the city.
Aderson Francois, a teacher at Howard University says that this ruling marked the end of school segregation but he also states that it didn’t include any specific date so some states could carry on segregation after the law was passed.
The journalist then explains that in 2012 the University of California published a study that shows how schools are LESS racially mixed than 40 years ago which means the situation is even worse today than it was at the time of segregation. She concludes saying social and economic problems are responsible for this situation.
The US is marking 60 years since the end of segregation, a 1964 landmark Supreme Court Ruling in the case of Brown Vs the Board of Education struck down the ‘separate but equal’ concept in education. This was meant to start the US down the path towards equality in schools across America.
But fast forward 6 decades and it turns out segregation is actually still running rampant in the country.
A report released this week by UCLA Civil Rights Project finds that Black and Latino students are more likely to attend schools with poor students whereas White and Asians students are more likely to be at middle-class schools.
Meanwhile segregation doesn’t just affect Black and White students any longer.
The number of Latino students has sky-rocketed making them the largest minority in public schools. There are nearly five times more Hispanic students in the US than during the Civil Rights Era and 30 % fewer White students.
According to this report :
New York, Illinois and California are the top 3 states for isolating Black students
as you can see on this map, only 8 % of Black students in California attend mostly white schools; in New York, it’s just over 13 %.
So when the end of segregation was passed in 1954, there were zero Black students in mostly white schools. According to the Department of Education statistics, in 1988 the number of Black students in majority white schools peaked to over 33% and then dropped down to 23% in 2011.
The UCLA reports that classrooms in America are less integrated today than they were in the 1960s. Analysts say progress has been made in the sixties and then largely halted over the last 2 decades, pointing to Supreme Court changes to desegregation laws in the 1990s. Others point to racial discrimination laws as well as the tendency for more well-off families to flock to better neighbourhoods and schools so the more disadvantaged kids end up in a more disadvantaged schools and those already well-off take up spots in the better classrooms.
So while officially the times of segregation are long gone, in reality, many kids are faced up to another truth: the education system separating them as opposed to bringing them up together to get ready for a much more diverse world.
- Intro : 60 years since the end of segregation
1964 landmark Supreme Court Ruling / Brown Vs the Board of Education
meant to struck down the ‘separate but equal’ concept in education
to start the US down the path towards equality in schools across America.
segregation is actually still running rampant
1. report / by UCLA Civil Rights Project :
Black and Latino students > chools with poor students
whereas White and Asians students > middle-class schools.
2. segregation doesn’t just affect Black and White students
number of Latino students / sky-rocketed > largest minority in public schools
CR Era # 5 x + Hispanic students / 30 % – White
3- NY (13% Black in White schools) / Illinois / California (8%) = top 3 states isolating Black students.
During CR Era: 0 Black students in White schools
in 1988 33%
in 2011 23%
progress in the 60s / halted in the 80s/90s
= now rich white kids go to rich neighbourhoods / disadvantaged Black kids can only go to poor neighbourhoods.
CCL – So while officially the times of segregation are over, in reality the education system still separates rich / poor // White + Asians vs Black / Hispanics
HW- Read Little Rock Nine text.
November 20th, 2014
UNIT 2 – The Color Line
Session 3 : Little Rock Nine / Read & React.
Jim Crow laws > racial laws > aimed at separating Black people from White people
> feeling of White supremacy
abolition of slavery 1865 / Lincoln
1896 Ruling of Plessy vs Ferguson > made segregation legal
South of America
Private businesses / transportation / Black people were given the jobs white people didn’t want / schools
Black people were not allowed to have lunch in some restaurants, they didn’t go to the same schools as white people…
The heroic role of kids and women in the Civil Rights movement against segregation in the US?
- Last week: Rosa Parks / Montgomery Bus Boycott
- Segregation in schools today vs in the past?
- Heroes: ordinary people or historical figures? Unsung / unexpected acts of bravey vs what history books keep in mind.
- Progress: to change the situation for Black people was a hard and long struggle / it didn’t happen overnight.
- Power: Laws are challenged by individuals ( Boycotts / speeches/ Parks / Martin Luther King)
But sometimes individuals need to keep fighting for the laws to be enforced.
TODAY we focus on:
- The Little Rock Nine Crisis Text Study – Carlotta
- One of the Little Rock Nine looks back – Elizabeth
The heroic role of kids and women in the Civil Rights movement against segregation in the US.
1950s – 1960s Civil Rights Movement – Freedom Riders / Fighters
Kennedy / Eisenhower / L. B . Johnson drafted the Civil Rights Act which ended segregation in 1964.
1954 – Brown Vs Board of Education ruling > schools should be desegregated.
Two landmark / key rulings:
1896 – Plessy Vs Ferguson = ‘Separate but Equal’ concept / segregation is legal
1954 – Brown Vs Board of Education = End of segregation
So far in the US White schools don’t accept Black students. The students are not considered equal. They don’t enjoy the same standards of education, not the same equipment, not the same level of education.
- So far: jusque là
- the same … as: le même que
Behind the school segregation is the idea that Black kids aren’t and should not become as clever as white kids because they could start to challenge the White system.
- To challenge: remettre en question
- to become: devenir
- clever: intelligent
The Little Rock Nine crisis illustrates a key moment in the ‘desegregation’ history, it paved the way for more Black kids to attend former white-only schools.
- Key moment: moment clef
- to pave the way for … : enclencher
- to attend a school: aller à l’école
- former: ancienne
1. The story is told by one of the nine black kids who tried to integrate Little Rock Central high school in 1957, in Arkansas. This school was a white-only school before 1954 and the B Vs B of Ed ruling.
Her name is Carlotta, she was a teenage student. We can notice a guard / soldier on the picture which tells us that the situation could get worse and be violent. So the kids need protection.
2. a. Schools before 1954 were separated between white-only ( rich ) and black-only (poor).
She decided to go because …
- there was a desegregation plan at the national level
- her teacher advised her / is responsible for the decision
- this school offers top-quality education
- is not far away.
As a negative result …
- she was harassed and humiliated and teachers wouldn’t interfere
- her father lost / would loose his job and had / would have trouble finding a new one
- her home was / would be bombed / her friends were / would be wrongly accused /
- miscarriage of justice / scapegoats
As a positive result …
- In spite of these obstacles, she managed to graduate and was the first African American girl to get a diploma in Little Rock.
- She succeeded in changing mentalities and paved the way for other Black kids to be considered as clever as White kids.
- Carlotta’s decision:
Her teacher is responsible for her decision / He advised her to go / he asked her if she could be interested in going.
The school is quite close (“less than a mile”) to her house / it’s not far away from her house.
It offers top-quality education that’s why she wants to attend the white school called Little Rock Central High School.
As a consequence / Because of her decision she was harassed, molested, mocked, shouted at and humiliated by white students.
As a result her father lost his job and had trouble finding a new one.
Her house was bombed and her friends were accused of the bombing. They were the victims of a miscarriage of justice.
On the other hand, she was the first black girl to get her diploma / to graduate in Little Rock.
She paved the way for new generations of Black kids.
She became an iconic symbol for change.
- New York Times article ‘President Threatens … ‘
New York Times article ‘President Threatens … ‘
It takes place in Little Rock Nine on the day Carlotta and the other eight black students tried / attempted to integrate the White Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas.
A ‘failed attempt’ is reported. They tried to go to school in the morning but at noon they were ordered to leave.
They only stayed inside for 3 hours. The crowd protested and won. They were hysterical and infuriated / outraged / hateful.
White students sang racist songs to show they were against it / their disapproval.
The authorities bowed / yielded to the pressure. They were supposed to protect them, escort them but they turned them away / forced them to leave. Nobody was hurt.
- CROWD: about a thousand people / white supremacists / ‘mob’ ‘hysterical’ ‘ fury’ ‘withdrawal’
White demonstrators forced the withdrawal of the Little Rock Nine / they were so hysterical / violent that they managed / succeeded in putting pressure on the guards and had them force the Black kids to leave. They were successful.
- AUTHORITIES ‘national guard’ followed by an order that comes from President Eisenhower and the governor of Arkansas.
The guards were here to protect the kids /escort them inside but in the end they forced them to leave.
- WHITE STUDENTS ‘They are singing racists songs to show they disagree with integration.
- BLACK STUDENTS : they are forced to leave.
The journalist criticizes the crowd of supremacists by portraying them as angry rioters, hysterical, infuriated and outraged people. > caricature of the angry White man.
- Abolition of slavery: 1865
- to be responsible for: être responsible de
- to advise so. To do sthg: conseiller à qq’un de faire qqchose.
- As a result / as a consequence : par conséquent
- to be harassed: être harcelé / molesté
- to be ostracized: être exclu
- to bomb: exploser / bombarder
- a miscarriage of justice: une erreur judiciaire.
- A failed attempt: une tentative ratée / un échec
- noon: midi
- to bow / to yield to pressure: céder à la pression
- Listen to One of the Little Rock Nine Looks Back, 2007.
1- Look at the title and dates of this document. Why did they decide to speak about the Little Rock Nine?
They broadcast a special show because they celebrate the 50th anniversary of the event. One of the students remembers / recalls / recounts the event / what she went through.
2- Match each name with the correct occupation:
guide – student – governor – reporter – photographer
ALEX CHADWICK – ORVAL FAUBUS – ELIZABETH ECKFORD – KRYSTAL MERCER – WILL COUNT
3- Which picture is referred to? Why? Pick out words you hear.
Large sunglasses – wearing a white dress – alone – angry mob – white woman’s face distorted by hatred – notebok – shield
4- What happened to Elizabeth? Why?
She took a city on her own / alone / couldn’t be part of the group > because of the confusion / phone call she didn’t receive because she didn’t have a phone.
5- How does she feel now?
She doesn’t want to talk about it anymore / has had enough / doesn’t want to recall this event because it’s too painful.
6- What was the governor’s reaction to desegregation?
He asked for troops / national guards to ensure peace and safety in good faith.
In the end his action is controversial.
7- What is Krystal’s feeling towards Elizabeth?
They are both black, Krystal was told about E’s story and they share a personal feeling of being black in a white school.
Tles: be ready for test on Unit 2 – Color Line + read / prepare questions on texts ‘Defending oneself’ / do ex. grammar /words / pronunvciation
1ères : imagine you’re Carlotta or Elizabeth. You’re writing a page in your diary on the day of the event. Tell about what happend and how you felt. / ex. Grammar / Words
WATC VIDEO FOR ‘pronunciation exercise’.
September 04, 2007 3:04 PM ET
ROBERT SMITH, host:
Now a first day of school story like no other. It’s part of our series on the battle over desegregation in Little Rock, Arkansas. Fifty years ago today, nine black students tried to attend Little Rock’s all-white Central High School. What happened there changed the country.
Here is DAY TO DAY’s Alex Chadwick with the story of one of those children and her back to school nightmare.
ALEX CHADWICK: Labor Day evening 50 years ago, the governor of Arkansas asks for emergency TV and radio time to speak to the state.
(Soundbite of recording)
Governor ORVAL FAUBUS (Democrat, Arkansas): Units of the Nation Guard have been and are now being mobilized with the mission to maintain or restore the peace and good order of this community.
CHADWICK: The guard was there to prevent violence, Orval Faubus said. No, said others, he was making things worse, his emergency.
The Little Rock School Board was allowing nine black students to attend the previously all-white high school. And on that first day, September 4th, the nine were supposed to meet to go together as group to school. But in that morning there was confusion, and one of them took a city bus to the school by herself.
Ms. ELIZABETH ECKFORD (Little Rock Nine): I’m Elizabeth Eckford. I’m 65 years old now. Fifty years ago I was part of a picture that has become iconic when I attempted to enter Little Rock Central High School and I was turned away by the Arkansas National Guard and subsequently followed by angry demonstrators.
(Soundbite of crowd)
CHADWICK: There were also reporters and photographers, and among them Will Counts. He took the image that captured that day at Central High. It’s at our Web site, npr.org.
There’s Elizabeth, arms cradled, holding a notebook in front of her like a small shield. She’s wearing a crisply starched white dress. She has large sunglasses with a tortoise shell frame. She’s walking, alone, in an angry crowd. A white girl right behind her, Elizabeth’s age, this girl’s face twisted in hatred and anger; the picture so powerful, you could hear it. She’s on the second syllable, -ger…
Fifty years later, it is still a strain for Elizabeth Eckford to recall these moments. Some of this story is better told by others.