Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 April 2022
Argued December 14, 1970.Decided March 8, 1971.
Justices Angela ONWUACHI-WILLIG and David SIMSON delivered the opinion of the Court.1
This case presents the first opportunity for this Court to interpret the provisions of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act in the context of race discrimination. As the Act grew out of, and was meant to help resolve, a period of massive contestation over the possibility, and terms, of racial progress in the United States – a contestation that continues – our task is of the utmost importance. In this case, a group of black employees argues that the practice of their employer, respondent Duke Power Company (“Duke” or “the company”), to require a high school education or satisfactory scores on two standardized general ability tests as a prerequisite for transfer and promotion discriminates against them on the basis of race in violation of Title VII.