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GCSE Exercises Reading - Two Eulogies

Richard Gent | Sunday February 22, 2015

Categories: KS4, AQA GCSE, AQA GCSE English Language 2015, EDEXCEL GCSE, Edexcel GCSE English Language 2015, EDEXCEL iGCSE, EDEXCEL iGCSE English Language, 9-1 IGCSE, 9-1 IGCSE English Language , OCR GCSE, OCR GCSE English Language 2015, WJEC Eduqas GCSE, WJEC Eduqas GCSE English Language 2015, GCSE 2021

From the time of post -American civil war reconstruction in the last decades of the C19th to the 1960s the Democratic rulers of the southern, formerly confederate states operated and developed the ‘Jim Crow’ laws which segregated black people from white. As Rosa Parks was growing up, she was forced to walk to her underfunded very basic school and watched the white children being driven in their school bus on the way to their well- equipped one. On public transport the front seats of the bus were reserved for white people only. As the bus filled up with white people, black people were forced to move to the rear and eventually off the bus altogether.

On Thursday December 1st, 1955, Rosa, now a seamstress in Montgomery, Alabama refused to move from her seat. She was turned off the bus, imprisoned and fined.

The black community in Montgomery boycotted the bus services for over a year. The bus company went bankrupt and the laws were eventually changed. It is one of the greatest stories of what a person of great courage, will and a burning sense of injustice can achieve.

At her funeral in 2005 Oprah Winfrey gave the eulogy. This is an extract from it.

Rosa Parks by Oprah Winfrey

“And after our first meeting I realized that God uses good people to do great things. And I’m here today to say a final thank you, Sister Rosa, for being a great woman who used your life to serve, to serve us all. That day that you refused to give up your seat on the bus, you, Sister Rosa, changed the trajectory…

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