Espace privé, espace public: Black Lives Matter

a) What elements immidiately strike you?

b) Where and when do you think the picture was taken?

c) Explain the situation.

d) What is the impact on the viewer? What are the photographer’s goals?

e)  What laws are enforced here? Discover them in the text below and say what impact they had on the black population.

"The separate but equal" Laws

From 1876 to 1965 federal and local laws were passed that established segregation between black and white people. They were separated in daily life, which meant they couldn’t share (= partager)  the same public facilities (= équipements) : They couldn’t go to the same cinemas, they couldn’t eat in the same restaurants, children couldn’t go to the same schools… Black people also had to respect some customs (= habitudes)  such as being served after a white person in a shop even if they had come first. Black men were even forbidden to make eye contact with white women (=Il était même interdit aux hommes noirs d’établir un contact visuel avec les femmes blanches.) In fact, black people were considered second-class citizens (= des citoyens de seconde zone) . They were victims of unfair (= unjust) and humiliating situations and also of intimidation so that black people would never protest, never complain (= se plaindre). They were also victims of such forms of violence as lynching (= le fait de pendre une personne sans procès). Therefore living under the Jim Crow laws was a terrible experience as black people were considered inferior. They were not treated as human beings.

Grammar Time

Expressing obligation




I have to work / He has to obey

They must stay silent

It is necessary that he work

It is obligatory that he be silent

He is forced to learn his lesson

They are obliged to listen to the teacher

You are compelled to wake up early



Expressing interdiction




It is prohibited to steal

You aren’t allowed to drink at school

You mustn’t shout

You aren’t permitted to listen to music at school

It is forbidden to be rude (= grossier) here