Saturday, September 6, 2008

Teaching Thurgood Marshall

I will be teaching a two-week intensive course at the University of Maryland School of Law while I am there as a Distinguished Visitor this fall. My course is a seminar on Thurgood Marshall and Civil Rights History. I decided to teach a course on Marshall for a number of reasons. I love to teach civil rights history, and a one-credit course is best, I think, when it has a particular focus. This year is Marshall's centennial, and he had a particular relationship with the University of Maryland. A Baltimore native, Marshall could not attend the state's law school because it excluded African Americans. His first major civil rights case, on behalf of law school applicant Donald Murray, was against the law school. And through Marshall's biography, we can take the narrative of civil rights history from the NAACP legal campaign, through Brown v. Board of Education and its aftermath, and on to the Supreme Court's later trajectory.

Of possible interest, here are my course readings. There is a vast literature on Marshall, of course, and you may well find that some of your favorites are not included. I tried to draw especially from the two books required for the course, Thurgood Marshall: His Speeches, Writings, Arguments, Opinions, and Reminiscences, Mark V. Tushnet, ed., (Lawrence Hill Books, 2001); and Mary L. Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams: Thurgood Marshall’s African Journey (Oxford University Press, 2008). Whenever possible, I included works by Marshall, rather than the literature about his jurisprudence. Students often feel overwhelmed with reading in an intensive course that meets several days a week, so part of my objective is to keep readings limited so that they might actually be read. I can bring ideas from the secondary literature into class discussions, and students will encounter a broader array of readings as they work on their papers.

A resource page (still in progress) will include links to major works on Marshall, helpful web resources, etc.

This is a draft, and the list of recommended works is preliminary. Suggestions are welcome!

Thurgood Marshall and Civil Rights History
University of Maryland School of Law
Professor Mary L. Dudziak
Distinguished Visitor
Fall 2008

Monday, Sept. 15

1. Introduction

Randall Kennedy, Preface, in Tushnet, ed., Thurgood Marshall, ix-xvii.
Mark Tushnet, Introduction, in Thurgood Marshall, xviii-xxvi.
Kenneth Mack, Law and Mass Politics in the Making of the Civil Rights Lawyer, 1931-1941, 93 Journal of American History 37 (2006) (download the article here).


Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams, 11-17.
The Reminiscences of Thurgood Marshall, in Thurgood Marshall, 413-423.
2. Marshall and the University of Maryland

Donald G. Murray and the University of Maryland Law School. Maryland Humanities (Winter, 1992).
Donald Murray , Obituary, Baltimore Sun, April 10, 1986.
Petition for Writ of Mandamus , Murray v. Pearson (1935).
Pearson v. Murray , 169 Md. 478 (1936).
Tuesday, Sept. 16

3. Marshall, Charles Hamilton Houston, and the Road to Brown

Marshall, An Evaluation of Recent Efforts to Achieve Racial Integration in Education Through Resort to the Courts (1952), in Thurgood Marshall, 145-156.
Missouri ex rel. Gaines v. Canada (1938).
Sweatt v. Painter (1950)
McLaurin v. Oklahoma (1950).

Genna Rae McNeil, Groundwork: Charles Hamilton Houston and the Struggle for Civil Rights (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1983).
Mark V. Tushnet, The NAACP's Legal Strategy against Segregated Education, 1925-1950 (University of North Carolina Press 1987).
Mark V. Tushnet, Making Civil Rights Law: Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court, 1936-1961 (Oxford University Press 1994).
4. Litigating Brown v. Board of Education

Brief, Brown v. Board of Education (1952), in Thurgood Marshall, 19-25.
Oral Argument, Briggs v. Elliott (1952), in Thurgood Marshall, 25-35.
Oral Argument on the Remedy, Brown v. Board of Education (1955), in Thurgood Marshall, 44-58.
Brown v. Board of Education (Brown I) (1954).
Brown v. Board of Education (Brown II) (1955).

Robert Carter and Thurgood Marshall, The Meaning and Significance of the Supreme Court Decree (1955), in Thurgood Marshall, 157-164.
Wednesday, Sept. 17

5. Marshall and the Civil Rights Movement

Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams, 54-64, 80-90, 98-107, 131-141.
Thursday, Sept. 18

6. Civil Rights Litigation and Social Change

Thurgood Marshall, Group Action in Pursuit of Justice (1969), in Thurgood Marshall, 227-235.
Michael Klarman, How Brown Changed Race Relations: The Backlash Thesis, 81 Journal of American History 81 (1994).

Gerald Rosenberg, The Hollow Hope: Can Courts Bring About Social Change? (University of Chicago Press, 1991).
Michael McCann, Rights at Work: Pay Equity Reform and the Politics of Legal Mobilization (University of Chicago Press, 1994).
7. Marshall, LBJ, and the Supreme Court

Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams, 154-170.

David Yalof, Pursuit of Justices: Presidential Politics and the Selection of Supreme Court Nominees (University of Chicago Press, 1999), 86-96.
Monday, Oct. 6

8. Justice Marshall and Equality Rights (both class hours on 10/6 will focus on
this topic)

Milliken v. Bradley (1974),Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 303-320.
San Antonio Independent School District v. Rodriguez (1973), Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 328-346.
Regents of the University of California v. Bakke (1978), Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 347-355.
Marshall, Reflections on the Bicentennial of the United States Constitution (1987), in Thurgood Marshall, 281-285.

Mark Tushnet, Making Constitutional Law: Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court, 1961-1991 (Oxford University Press, 68-145.
Tuesday, Oct. 7

9. Marshall and Rights of the Poor

Dandridge v. Williams (1970), Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 321-327.
United States v. Kras (1973), Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 371-372.

10. Marshall, the Death Penalty, and Rights of the Accused

Ake v. Oklahoma (1985), Majority Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 373-380.
Payne v. Texas (1991), Dissenting Opinion, in Thurgood Marshall, 404-409.
Marshall, Remarks on the Death Penalty (1986), in Thurgood Marshall, 286-292.
Marshall, Remarks at the Annual Dinner in Honor of the Judiciary (1990), in Thurgood Marshall, 293-295.

Tushnet, Making Constitutional Law, 146-178.

Wednesday, Oct. 8

11. Marshall and Gender Equality

Guest speaker: Professor Taunya Banks. The reading will be a paper by Prof. Banks, to be available on Blackboard.
Wednesday, Oct. 9, 5:00 p.m. – Special Session: Lecture by Prof. Dudziak on Thurgood Marshall’s Global Impact

12. Marshall’s Global Impact

Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams, 1-9, 29-54, 65-80, 90-96.

Dudziak, Exporting American Dreams, 97-98, 107-129, 141-154, 170-172.

Thursday, Oct. 9

13. Wrap-up/Discussion of Student Paper Topics

Descriptions of student paper topics will be distributed. There is no other reading assignment for this class.

Photo: Thurgood Marshall accompanies Autherine Lucy to court in her suit against the University of Alabama, 1956.