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Making Civil Rights Law: Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court, 1936-1961


reviewed by Scott Baker — 1995

coverTitle: Making Civil Rights Law: Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court, 1936-1961
Author(s): Mary V. Tushnet
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Oxford
ISBN: 0195104684, Pages: , Year: 1995
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A half-century ago, Gunnar Myrdal argued that America was moving toward a resolution of its racial dilemma--the contradiction between the creed of equality and the practice of racial discrimination. For many, the legal victories of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in Brown v. Board of Education and other cases offered important support for Myrdal's contention. Influenced by Myrdal's conception of the racial issue as a moral one, Richard Kluger's history of the NAACP's legal campaign against segregation, Simple Justice, portrayed the Supreme Court as the conscience of the nation, and concluded that NAACP litigation resolved the American dilemma by establishing "equality in fact as well as law."[1] While Kluger argued that the legal campaign was an "unproblematic success," Mark V. Tushnet contends that "the course of civil rights litigation in the 1940's and 1950's was not smooth" (p. 3). Tushnet's analysis of Thurgood Marshall's work as the NAACP's chief strategist and litigator between 1936 and 1961 recasts the American dilemma in legal... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 97 Number 2, 1995, p. 335-337
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 1451, Date Accessed: 12/15/2017 9:13:24 AM

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