In this unit, students will analyze literary texts, case law, court documents, photographs and film that document the violation of African Americans' rights and the history of social injustice in America's legal system. By the end of the unit, students should be able to analyze historical text, examine the African American experience during Jim Crow, develop meaningful connections as to the complainants in the legal cases, and finally, argue whether the Groveland Boys were guilty of rape in 1948. When teaching about social injustice during the Jim Crow period, the Scottsboro case is a popular example. There are many resources and educational units online for teachers. However, not many students or adults know about the Groveland Four, hence the reasoning behind the selection of
The Devil in the Grove
. Reading and supplemental materials are organized and grouped based on historical events. With the material broken down into time periods, students can form connections related to historical context; it is important for students to see that the treatment of African Americans often related to the politics and economics of a specific era. The focus will be how the legal system addressed instances of social injustice, as well as how those experiences were shaped by the time period and presented comparative or contrasting experiences.
(Developed for English III, grade 11; recommended for English II, grade 10, English III, grade 11, and English IV, grade 12)