"With vivid portraits of strong-willed characters, Titus describes the roots of the Prince Edward County struggle in a student-led strike in 1951. . . . [Her] narrative stresses not only the profound social segregation of Prince Edward County but also the human cost of its prolonged struggle. Rich descriptions of church-hall gatherings, door-to-door canvassing, and individual student experiences bring her story to life."
-American Historical Review
"Titus effectively provides a comprehensive history of the darkest hour of massive resistance in the wake of the Brown v. Board of Education
-Journal of Southern History
"A welcome addition to the growing body of scholarship on school desegregation and the civil rights era in Virginia."--
"Excellent. . . . Looks beyond the contours of the familiar legal and political narrative to focus instead on the determined yet often futile and heartbreaking efforts of black parents and a handful of white supporters to overcome fierce resistance from white segregationists and ensure a modicum of justice for their children."
-Journal of American History
From the Inside Flap
When the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Brown v. Board of Education
in 1954, Prince Edward County, Virginia, abolished its public school system rather than integrate. Titus situates the crisis in Prince Edward County within the seismic changes brought by Brown
and Virginia's decision to resist desegregation and reveals the ways that ordinary people, black and white, battled, and continue to battle, over the role of public education in the United States.