Rosa Parks: Books to read about her life for young people

by Staff

If you know about the civil rights movement that took place in the United States in the 20th century, you’ve probably heard the name of Rosa Parks. Yes, it was she who refused to give up her bus seat to a white man on a Montgomery bus in 1955. This brave action inspired some of the most influential leaders of the Black community to organize the Montgomery Bus Boycott that changed the flow of history. Being led by Martin Luther King Jr., this boycott lasted for over a year. It ended only when the US Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional. Eventually, Rosa Parks became a symbol of dignity and strength on a national level.

Most people still remember this figure for her struggle to end racial segregation. Students learn about Rosa Parks in the context of the most important historical events. That’s why they often look for Rosa Parks essays for high school on the web, hoping to find some interesting information. Luckily there are a lot of materials about the life of this legendary woman. You can find tons of informative magazine articles, blog posts and educational videos. If none of those is enough for you, you can also check the books listed below. Hopefully, they will provide you with some valuable insights.

If a Bus Could Talk: The Story of Rosa Parks

This book written by Faith Ringgold is created in the form of a talk. You will read how a girl named Marcie learns on a bus why Rosa Parks is believed to be a mother of the immense Civil Rights movement. At the end of her ride, Marcie will meet Rosa Parks herself together with several other famous people. Sounds exciting, isn’t it?

Rosa Parks: My Story

This is a must read for everybody interested in the life of Rosa Parks. From her straightforward and compelling autobiography, you can learn how it felt to be a part of major historical alterations in society. Rosa Parks, the author of this book, talks plainly about her active role in the civil rights movement. Believe it or not, this story is just unforgettable. What’s more, it’s extremely inspiring, especially for young people.

I Am Rosa Parks

Another book that could inspire you to follow your dreams is “I Am Rosa Parks” by Brad Meltzer. Actually, this is a short series that brings American history to life. It’s not only interesting to read but also quite useful as it provides readers with the right models to look up to. Check it yourself if it’s true for you!

Rosa Parks (History’s All-Stars)

If you know enough about the adult life of Rosa Parks and wonder what her childhood was like, you should get this book by Kathleen Kudlinski. The author tells in such an engaging manner how a little girl grew up into a legendary Civil Rights activist and what helped her become an all-star in world history.

The Rebellious Life of Ms. Rosa Parks

This work produced by Jeanne Theoharis presents a corrective to the popular beliefs about Rosa Parks. Even though many people think she birthed the modern civil rights movement with just a single act, Theoharis goes beyond that. The author provides a revealing window into Parks’ years of activism. Theoharis tries to demonstrate how the civil rights movement was seeking to eradicate the American racial-caste system for more than fifty years. She describes what Rosa Parks did apart from her famous action in order to change the system in schools, jobs justice and public services.

Life after the boycott

Unfortunately, Rosa Parks faced harassment and threats long after the boycott. To avoid serious problems, she decided to move to Detroit together with her husband and mother. This location was picked because her brothers resided there. In 1965, Parks obtained a position of an administrative aide in the Detroit office of Congressman. Interestingly, she managed to hold this post until her retirement in 1988.

Once Rosa Parks retired, she traveled to offer her support to civil-rights events. She also wrote a famous autobiography mentioned above “Rosa Parks: My Story.” In 1999, this legendary woman was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal. In fact, it’s the highest honor the United States provides to a civilian. What’s more, Rosa Parks became the first woman in history to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol.

Final thoughts

Rosa Parks had a hard yet exciting life. She dramatically contributed to major historical changes in American society. To learn more about this legendary woman, pick one of the books described above and find a little time to study the life of Rosa Parks.

Author’s BIO

Michael Turner is a writer, social activist and popular blogger. He is passionate about American history, so in his free time he loves reading biographies of big political figures. Michael also enjoys giving free lectures on history for high school and college students.


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The New Jersey Digest is a new jersey magazine that has chronicled daily life in the Garden State for over 10 years.

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