Journal of Legal Eduation
The Road to Brown is a film that deals with the transformative judicial ruling of Brown v. Board of Education. Many regard this case as the most important holding ever made by a United States court. The Road to Brown offers law professors a superb vehicle for bringing to the classroom the attention to persons, sense of history, and focus on litigation strategy that a great decision demands.
The Road to Brown provides a rich socio-legal-historical perspective on the events that culminated in the 1945 Supreme Court ruling barring racial segregation in public elementary schools. The program blends together photographs, news footage, artistic renderings, and music of the times, recollections of participants in the litigation struggle, and present-day commentary by judges, historians, and others. The result is a visual presentation that conveys more than information. It reaches the viewer on an affective level, offering to renew the spirit as well as inform the mind.
The film does much to accurately locate a great case within its historical context, chart its litigation strategy, and vividly present its human dimensions. Law professors who cover Brown should use the film in class or require students to view it as an out-of-class assignment. The Road to Brown offers great potential for effectively teaching transformative jurisprudence.
Vincent R. Johnson, Teaching Transformative Jurisprudence (film review), 41 J. Legal Educ. 533 (1991).