Literature Study GuidesCivil Rights Cases 1883

Civil Rights Cases (1883) | Study Guide

U.S. Supreme Court

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Course Hero. "Civil Rights Cases (1883) Study Guide." Course Hero. 8 Nov. 2019. Web. 22 Nov. 2019. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Civil-Rights-Cases-1883/>.

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Course Hero. (2019, November 8). Civil Rights Cases (1883) Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved November 22, 2019, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Civil-Rights-Cases-1883/

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Course Hero. "Civil Rights Cases (1883) Study Guide." November 8, 2019. Accessed November 22, 2019. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Civil-Rights-Cases-1883/.

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Course Hero, "Civil Rights Cases (1883) Study Guide," November 8, 2019, accessed November 22, 2019, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Civil-Rights-Cases-1883/.

Overview

Author

U.S. Supreme Court

Year Decided

1883

Type

Primary Source

Genre

U.S. Supreme Court Case

At a Glance

  • The Civil Rights Act of 1875 was passed to help protect African Americans from discrimination and ensure they had the full benefits of U.S. citizenship.
  • The 1883 Civil Rights Cases, a set of five cases merged into one Supreme Court case, challenged Sections 1 and 2 of the Civil Rights Act of 1875.
  • Section 1 of the 1875 law guaranteed access to public places and amusements (such as inns and theaters) to everyone, regardless of race. Section 2 authorized prosecution of anyone who tried to prevent such access.
  • The court ruled 8–1 that Sections 1 and 2 of the 1875 law were unconstitutional.
  • Justice Joseph P. Bradley (1813–92) wrote the majority opinion. His principle argument was that the discrimination in question in the cases was perpetrated by individuals, not by the states.
  • Bradley also argued the 14th Amendment allows Congress to take corrective action against states but does not give Congress authority to pass laws broadly protecting rights.
  • Justice John Marshall Harlan (1833–1911) wrote a dissenting opinion, arguing that Congress does have sufficient power to create laws such as the Civil Rights Act of 1875.
  • Harlan further argued that the intention of Congress also had to be considered in favor of the 1875 law.

Summary

This study guide for U.S. Supreme Court's Civil Rights Cases (1883) offers summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.

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