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Anderson v. Bessemer City

United States Supreme Court
470 U.S. 564 (1985)


Facts

Anderson (plaintiff) sued Bessemer City (defendant) under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, alleging that the city discriminated against her on the basis of sex in declining to hire her for a management position. After a two day trial the district court issued a memorandum briefly setting forth its findings of fact and concluding that Anderson had indeed been discriminated against on the basis of sex. The court asked Anderson and the city to submit their own proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law to elaborate on the court’s own. After considering the parties’ submissions, the court issued its final findings of fact and conclusions of law, holding that Anderson had been discriminated against on the basis of sex. The court concluded that she was the most qualified candidate, that she had been asked questions at the interview not asked of male candidates, and that male members of the hiring committee were biased against hiring a woman. On appeal, the court of appeals overturned the judgment, finding it clearly erroneous, and Anderson petitioned the United States Supreme Court for review.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (White, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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Concurrence (Blackmun, J.)

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Concurrence (Powell, J.)

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