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Document Study: Judith Frieze, Freedom Rider

  1. Tell your students:
    Today we're going to learn about a young woman, just a few years older than you, who took part in the civil disobedience of the Civil Rights Movement by volunteering for a project called the Freedom Rides.
  2. Distribute copies of the Document Study to your students. Have a student read the introductory paragraph about Judith Frieze and the Freedom Rides. You may also want to review some of the information from the introductory essay with your students, so that they understand the context for Frieze's stories. Be sure to define any terms your students may not be familiar with.
  3. Break your class into small groups and have them read the excerpts from The Boston Globe on Document Study #1 out loud. Each group should choose one of Frieze's statements that stands out to them as being the most significant part of her experience.
  4. Have your students come back together as a class and share the statements they chose.
  5. Using the questions on the Document Study, discuss The Boston Globe articles with your students.
  6. While you're discussing the articles, you may want to project the "mug shot" taken of Judith Frieze when she was arrested during the Freedom Ride, which appears at the beginning of this lesson.
  7. Let your students know that Judith Frieze – now Judith Frieze Wright – told JWA in a 2010 conversation about the Boston Globe articles that she was not happy with the articles when they came out – she felt they were too "fluffy," highlighting details like conditions in the prison rather than the important civil rights issues at stake. Frieze later returned South to work for a year as a civil rights activist.
  8. Optional: Play the video clip of Judith Frieze Wright. Introduce the video by explaining: The Jewish Women's Archive (the creators of this lesson) invited Judith Frieze Wright to be interviewed at their 2010 Institute for Educators. We're going to watch a portion of that interview in which she reflects back on her experience as a Freedom Rider, from the perspective of 49 years later.
  9. After watching the video as a class, ask students to turn to the person next to them to talk about what they thought of Wright’s reflections, using the provided discussion questions as a guide.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Document Study: Judith Frieze, Freedom Rider." (Viewed on January 21, 2018) <>.


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