In this opinion, authored by chief justice earl warren, the supreme court ruled that "separate but equal" was unconstitutional, overturning its earlier ruling in

1 Answer

  • Plessy v Ferguson (1896) was the earlier ruling overturned by Brown v. Board of Education (1954).

    Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, decided by the US Supreme Court in 1954, extended civil liberties to all Americans in regard to access to education. Until that decision, it was legal to segregate schools according to race, so that black students could not attend the same schools as white students.  The older Supreme Court decision, Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), had said that separate, segregated public facilities were acceptable as long as the facilities offered were equal in quality.  In the case of Brown v. Board of Education, that standard was challenged and defeated.  Segregation was shown to create inequality, and the Supreme Court unanimously ruled segregation to be unconstitutional.