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FINDING A WAY HOME by Larry Dane Brimner


Mildred and Richard Loving and the Fight for Marriage Equality

by Larry Dane Brimner

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-62979-751-9
Publisher: Calkins Creek/Boyds Mills

An overview of the landmark 1967 case of Loving v. Virginia that legalized interracial marriage in the United States.

Richard and Mildred Loving didn’t set out to change marriage laws. Richard was White and Mildred was Black and Native American, and the young couple only wanted to live together as husband and wife. Married in Washington, D.C., in 1958, the newlyweds couldn’t cohabitate in their home state of Virginia because interracial marriage was still illegal there. What followed was almost a decade of arrests, legal battles, and separation until their case eventually made its way to the Supreme Court. Brimner presents the facts in no-nonsense prose while providing context for the couple’s plight: The history of segregation, the impact of the civil rights movement, and background on the judicial system are woven throughout. Brimner presents the debate about whether Mildred was multiracial or only Native American without drawing a definite conclusion. The concluding chapters show how the Loving case had a direct impact on the legalization of same-sex marriage, bringing home the lasting effect of this historic Supreme Court decision. This thoroughly researched, attractively designed work is rich with primary sources, making history tangible. The placement and size of the photos, including intimate family shots, increase the narrative’s appeal and add momentum to every page turn.

Brimner adds another strong text to his growing oeuvre of social justice–themed informational texts.

(author’s note, bibliography, source notes, index, picture credits) (Nonfiction. 12-18)