Excerpt from Southern Horrors: Lynch Laws in All Its Phases
In “Excerpt from Southern Horrors: Lynch Laws in All Its Phases,” historical activist Ida B. Wells discusses the injustice and horrors of Southern lynch laws, focusing especially on the violence enacted against African Americans following the Civil War and Reconstruction Era.
When and How to Pair: Introduce this article after students finish page 102, when Sophia is imprisoned and Mary Agnes attempts to free her, to explore African American women’s vulnerability to violence in the South. How does Ida B. Wells portray the justice system in the south? How do Sophia’s experiences in jail reinforce this? How do both Sophia and Mary Agnes suffer physical abuse? Why are they unable to challenge these various injustices?