An Epitaph for Little Rock


A Fiftieth Anniversary Retrospective on the Central High Crisis
Edited by John A. Kirk
Foreword by Juan Williams
978-1-55728-874-5 (paper)
March 2008


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This collection of essays mines the Arkansas Historical Quarterly from the 1960s to the present to form a body of work that represents some of the finest scholarship on the crisis, from distinguished southern historians Numan V. Bartley, Neil R. McMillen, Tony A. Freyer, Roy Reed, David L. Chappell, Lorraine Gates Schuyler, John A. Kirk, Azza Salama Layton, and Ben F. Johnson III.

A comprehensive array of topics are explored, including the state, regional, national, and international dimensions of the crisis as well as local white and black responses to events, gender issues, politics, and law. Introduced with an informative historiographical essay from John A. Kirk, An Epitaph for Little Rock is essential reading on this defining moment in America’s civil rights struggle.

“The issues that combined so explosively in Little Rock in 1957 continue to roil American politics and law. That is why Americans continue to study what happened there for some insight into who we really are and where we are headed in this new century. The issue is still how to take race out of the equation when it comes to educating every American child.”
—From the foreword by Juan Williams, senior correspondent for National Public Radio and author of Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary and Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, 1954–1965

John A. Kirk is chair and Donaghey Professor of History at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the author of Beyond Little Rock: The Origins and Legacies of the Central High Crisis and the co-editor of Arsnick: The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in Arkansas.


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