Important People in A More Beautiful and Terrible History

Jeanne Theoharis
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Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks is one of the most famous and memorialized civil rights leaders. However, Theoharis argues that her legacy has been co-opted to serve the national narrative, diminishing her character and her many years of activism. Rosa Parks is most famous for her refusal to give up her seat on a segregated bus. The way she has been memorialized mistakenly emphasizes the power of this single act, while ignoring the reality that Rosa Parks was committed to activism and engaged with the civil rights struggle in many ways both before and after this single famous event. Rosa Parks is often memorialized through stereotypical representations of women as meek and passive instead of as the active and strong character she was. The national narrative also neglects to mention the severe discrimination that Parks and her family faced by those who opposed her activism.

Martin Luther King Jr.

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This section contains 1,522 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A More Beautiful and Terrible History Study Guide
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