Rosa Parks and the Civil Rights Movement: Critical Essay

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A brave woman, Rosa Parks played a key role in starting the civil rights movement for African Americans.

Rosa Parks lived in Montgomery, Alabama, a city with a reputation as the first pro-slavery capital of the Confederacy during the American Civil War. Rosa Parks, a seamstress at a downtown department store, had a prior history as a civil rights campaigner, having served as a youth organizer for the local branch of America’s oldest and most effective civil rights organization, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). In 1954, the US Supreme Court verdict in the case of Brown v. Board of Education signaled federal opposition to racial segregation, this inspired Rosa Parks to stand, or in this case, sit for her belief in equality.

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Rosa was arrested for civil disobedience. It happened one day when she refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a crowded bus. When asked in an interview about the reason for the rejection, she emphasized that she was an activist and long-time member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Moreover, according to Anne Schraff, Rosa's grandfather, also black, taught her to stand up for principles when the Ku Klux Klan tried to harm their family.

This outright defiance of a black woman sparked the push for racial equality. Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat and her subsequent arrest seemed to offer activists from organizations such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Women’s Political Committee to use the situation to see the extent of bus segregation laws in federal courts. Through the leadership of a magnetic but unknown preacher named Martin Luther King Jr., the Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA) initiated a year-long boycott that encapsulated the attention of the world and heaped pressure on the city’s white authorities to respond to black demands – reforming laws regarding segregation on buses. Finally, In November 1956, the US Supreme Court issued a brief and narrow ruling that racial segregation on private buses in Montgomery was unlawful under the Fourteenth Amendment.

Rosa Parks was a minority, she was a woman and she was African American, she stood up for what she believed in and was righteous, she went against established social norms to improve not only herself but society as well. Her role in the civil rights movement and in history in general is extremely significant.

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Rosa Parks and the Civil Rights Movement: Critical Essay. (2023, November 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved May 26, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/rosa-parks-and-the-civil-rights-movement-critical-essay/
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