RaceSex & Gender

the story of recy taylor, the woman who was gang-raped by 6 white men and dared to speak her truth

January 8, 2018
618 Picks

Two weeks ago, freedom fighter Recy Taylor passed away at the age of 97. In 1944, Taylor was kidnapped and raped by six white men while walking home from church one evening. The case was protested by Rosa Parks, then a local NAACP official, but like too many attackers of Black women, none of her rapists were ever indicted.

Last night, Cecil B. de Mille Award winner Oprah Winfrey invoked Taylor’s legacy in a passionate affirmation of the #MeToo movement. Letting abusers know that their “time’s up,” Oprah explained that the problem with sexual harassment should not be limited to efforts in Hollywood, and they affect women of all stripes, like Taylor.

Taylor’s life was the subject of a new documentary, The Rape of Recy Taylor, and was discussed in books by Danielle McGuire and Jeanne Theoharris.

Taylor raised six siblings after their mother died when she was young. She is survived by a brother, Robert Lee Corbitt, 81, her two remaining sisters, Mary Murry, 90, and Lillie Kinsey, 94, one granddaughter and several great-grandchildren. Her only child, Joyce Lee Taylor, died in a car crash in 1967.