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Civil Rights & Liberties
|The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery
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Author: Eric Foner
“A masterwork [by] the preeminent historian of the Civil War era.”―Boston Globe Selected as a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times Book Review, this landmark work gives us a definitive account of Lincoln's lifelong engagement with the nation's critical issue: American slavery. A master historian, Eric Foner draws Lincoln and the broader history of the period into perfect balance. We see Lincoln, a pragmatic politician grounded in principle, deftly navigating the dynamic politics of antislavery, secession, and civil war. Lincoln's greatness emerges from his capacity for moral and political growth. 16 pages of black-and-white illustrations; 3 maps
|Reckoning with Race: America's Failure
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Author: Gene Dattel
Reckoning with Race confronts America's most intractable problem—race. The book outlines in a provocative, novel manner American racial issues from the beginning of the nineteenth century to the present. It explodes myths about the South as America's exclusive racial scapegoat. The book moves to the Great Migration north and the urban ghettos which still plague America.
Importantly, the evergreen topics of identity, assimilation, and separation come to the fore in a balanced, uncompromising, and unflinching narrative. People, cities, and regions are profiled. Despite civil rights legislation, the racial divide between the races remains a chasm. A plethora of reports, commissions, conferences, and other highly visible gestures, purporting to do something have generated publicity, but little else. There remain no adequate structures—family, community or church—to provide leadership. Destructive cultural traits cannot be explained solely by poverty.
The book asks and answers many questions. After emancipation, how were blacks historically segregated from the rest of American society? Why is self-segregation still a feature of black society? Why do large numbers of blacks resist assimilation and the acceptance of middle class norms of behavior? Why has there been so little black penetration in the private sector? Why did the removal of overt legal segregation and civil rights legislation in the 1960s not settle the racial conundrum? What are the differences and similarities between the leaders of the civil rights movement in the 1960s and today? Why do we still have the problems enumerated in the Kerner Commission report (1968) after trillions of dollars have been spent promote black progress? What, if anything, should be done, to eliminate the racial divide?
- Reckoning with Race An American Failure
|Dare Not Linger: The Presidential Years
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Author: Nelson Mandela
The long-awaited second volume of Nelson Mandela’s memoirs, left unfinished at his death and never before available, are here completed and expanded with notes and speeches written by Mandela during his historic presidency, making for a moving sequel to his worldwide bestseller Long Walk to Freedom.
“I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can rest only for a moment, for with freedom comes responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.”
In 1994, Nelson Mandela became the first president of a democratic South Africa. From the outset, he was committed to serving only a single five-year term. During his presidency, he and his government ensured that all of South Africa’s citizens became equal before the law, and he laid the foundation for turning a country riven by centuries of colonialism and apartheid into a fully functioning democracy.
Dare Not Linger is the story of Mandela’s presidential years, drawing heavily on the memoir he began to write as he prepared to leave office, but was unable to finish. Now the acclaimed South African writer Mandla Langa has completed the task, using Mandela’s unfinished draft, detailed notes that Mandela made as events were unfolding, and a wealth of unseen archival material. With a prologue by Mandela’s widow, Graça Machel, the result is a vivid and often inspirational account of Mandela’s presidency and the creation of a new democracy. It tells the story of a country in transition and the challenges Mandela faced as he strove to make his vision for a liberated South Africa a reality.
|Guantánamo Diary: Restored Edition
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Author: Mohamedou Ould Slahi
The acclaimed national bestseller, the first and only diary written by a Guantánamo detainee during his imprisonment, now with previously censored material restored.
When GUANTÁNAMO DIARY was first published--heavily redacted by the U.S. government--in 2015, Mohamedou Ould Slahi was still imprisoned at the detainee camp in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, despite a federal court ruling ordering his release, and it was unclear when or if he would ever see freedom. In October 2016, he was finally released and reunited with his family. During his 14-year imprisonment, the United States never charged him with a crime.
Now for the first time, he is able to tell his story in full, with previously censored material restored. This searing diary is not merely a vivid record of a miscarriage of justice, but a deeply personal memoir---terrifying, darkly humorous, and surprisingly gracious. GUANTÁNAMO DIARY is a document of immense emotional power and historical importance.
|Escape from Freedom
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Author: Erich Fromm
Brand: Holt Paperbacks
If humanity cannot live with the dangers and responsibilities inherent in freedom, it will probably turn to authoritarianism. This is the central idea of Escape from Freedom, a landmark work by one of the most distinguished thinkers of our time, and a book that is as timely now as when first published in 1941. Few books have thrown such light upon the forces that shape modern society or penetrated so deeply into the causes of authoritarian systems. If the rise of democracy set some people free, at the same time it gave birth to a society in which the individual feels alienated and dehumanized. Using the insights of psychoanalysis as probing agents, Fromm's work analyzes the illness of contemporary civilization as witnessed by its willingness to submit to totalitarian rule.
|No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State
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Author: Glenn Greenwald
Brand: Greenwald Glenn
By Glenn Greenwald, star of Citizenfour, the Academy Award-winning documentary on Edward Snowden
In May 2013, Glenn Greenwald set out for Hong Kong to meet an anonymous source who claimed to have astonishing evidence of pervasive government spying and insisted on communicating only through heavily encrypted channels. That source turned out to be the twenty-nine-year-old NSA contractor Edward Snowden, and his revelations about the agency's widespread, systemic overreach proved to be some of the most explosive and consequential news in recent history, triggering a fierce debate over national security and information privacy.
Now Greenwald fits all the pieces together, recounting his high-intensity eleven-day trip to Hong Kong, examining the broader implications of the surveillance detailed in his reporting for The Guardian, and revealing fresh information on the NSA's unprecedented abuse of power with documents from the Snowden archive. Fearless and incisive, No Place to Hide has already sparked outrage around the globe and been hailed by voices across the political spectrum as an essential contribution to our understanding of the U.S. surveillance state.
An Amazon Best Book of the Month, May 2014: In May of 2013, Edward Snowden, a young systems administrator contracting for the National Security Agency, fled the United States for Hong Kong, carrying with him thousands of classified documents outlining the staggering capabilities of the NSA.’s surveillance programs--including those designed to collect information within the U.S. There Snowden arranged a meeting with Guardian columnist Glenn Greenwald, and so began the most explosive leak of classified material since the Pentagon Papers, over 40 years ago. No Place to Hide opens with Greenwald’s tense account of his initial cloak-and-dagger encounters with Snowden, then transitions into descriptions of the NSA’s vast information-collection apparatus, including a selection of the “Snowden files” with commentary on the alphabet soup of agencies and code names. And--in typical Greenwald style--the book is packed with his opinions on government snooping, its legality, and the impacts on our Constitutional freedoms. Whether you consider Snowden a whistleblower crying foul on government overreach, or a self-aggrandizing traitor who put national security at risk, Greenwald’s book is thrilling and enlightening, a bellwether moment in a crucial debate. --Jon Foro
- No Place to Hide Edward Snowden the NSA and the U S Surveillance State
|Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed
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Author: Jason L. Riley
Brand: Jason L Riley
Why is it that so many efforts by liberals to lift the black underclass not only fail, but often harm the intended beneficiaries?
In Please Stop Helping Us, Jason L. Riley examines how well-intentioned welfare programs are in fact holding black Americans back. Minimum-wage laws may lift earnings for people who are already employed, but they price a disproportionate number of blacks out of the labor force. Affirmative action in higher education is intended to address past discrimination, but the result is fewer black college graduates than would otherwise exist. And so it goes with everything from soft-on-crime laws, which make black neighborhoods more dangerous, to policies that limit school choice out of a mistaken belief that charter schools and voucher programs harm the traditional public schools that most low-income students attend.
In theory these efforts are intended to help the poor—and poor minorities in particular. In practice they become massive barriers to moving forward.
Please Stop Helping Us lays bare these counterproductive results. People of goodwill want to see more black socioeconomic advancement, but in too many instances the current methods and approaches aren’t working. Acknowledging this is an important first step.
- Please Stop Helping Us How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed
|Parting the Waters : America in the King Years 1954-63
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Author: Taylor Branch
Brand: Brand: Simon n Schuster
In volume one of his America in the King Years, Pulitzer Prize winner Taylor Branch gives a masterly account of the American civil rights movement.
Hailed as the most masterful story ever told of the American civil rights movement, Parting the Waters is destined to endure for generations.
Moving from the fiery political baptism of Martin Luther King, Jr., to the corridors of Camelot where the Kennedy brothers weighed demands for justice against the deceptions of J. Edgar Hoover, here is a vivid tapestry of America, torn and finally transformed by a revolutionary struggle unequaled since the Civil War.
Taylor Branch provides an unsurpassed portrait of King's rise to greatness and illuminates the stunning courage and private conflict, the deals, maneuvers, betrayals, and rivalries that determined history behind closed doors, at boycotts and sit-ins, on bloody freedom rides, and through siege and murder.
Epic in scope and impact, Branch's chronicle definitively captures one of the nation's most crucial passages.
The first book of a formidable three-volume social history, Parting the Waters is more than just a biography of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. during the decade preceding his emergence as a national figure. Branch's thousand-page effort, which won the Pulitzer Prize as well as the National Book Critics Circle Award for General Nonfiction, profiles the key players and events that helped shape the American social landscape following World War II but before the civil-rights movement of the 1960s reached its climax. The author then goes a step further, endeavoring to explain how the struggles evolved as they did by probing the influences of the main actors while discussing the manner in which events conspired to create fertile ground for change.
Timeline of a Trilogy
Taylor Branch's America in the King Years series is both a biography of Martin Luther King and a history of his age. No timeline can do justice to its wide cast of characters and its intricate web of incident, but here are some of the highlights, which might be useful as a scorecard to the trilogy's nearly 3,000 pages.
| || |
| Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954-63 || |
|May: At age 25, King gives his first sermon as pastor-designate of Montgomery's Dexter Avenue Baptist Church. ||1954 ||May: French surrender to Viet Minh at Dien Bien Phu. Unanimous Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board outlaws segregated public education.|
|December: Rosa Parks is arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus, leading to the Montgomery bus boycott, which King is drafted to lead. ||1955 || |
|October: King spends his first night in jail, following his participation in an Atlanta sit-in. ||1960 ||February: Four students attempting to integrate a Greensboro, North Carolina, lunch counter spark a national sit-in movement. |
April: The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee is founded.
November: Election of President John F. Kennedy
|May: The Freedom Rides begin, drawing violent responses as they challenge segregation throughout the South. King supports the riders during an overnight siege in Montgomery. ||1961 ||July: SNCC worker Bob Moses arrives for his first summer of voter registration in rural Mississippi. |
August: East German soldiers seal off West Berlin behind the Berlin Wall.
|March: J. Edgar Hoover authorizes the bugging of Stanley Levinson, King's closest white advisor. ||1962 ||September: James Meredith integrates the University of Mississippi under massive federal protection. |
|April: King, imprisoned for demonstrating in Birmingham, writes the "Letter from Birmingham Jail." |
May: Images of police violence against marching children in Birmingham rivet the country.
August: King delivers his "I Have a Dream" speech before hundreds of thousands at the March on Washington.
September: The Ku Klux Klan bombing of Birmingham's 16th Street Baptist Church kills four young girls.
|1963 ||June: Mississippi NAACP leader Medgar Evers assassinated. |
November: President Kennedy assassinated.
| Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65 || |
| || ||November: Lyndon Johnson, in his first speech before Congress as president, promises to push through Kennedy's proposed civil rights bill. |
|March: King meets Malcolm X for the only time during Senate filibuster of civil rights legislation. |
June: King joins St. Augustine, Florida, movement after months of protests and Klan violence.
October: King awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and campaigns for Johnson's reelection.
November: Hoover calls King "the most notorious liar in the country" and the FBI sends King an anonymous "suicide package" containing scandalous surveillance tapes.
|1964 ||January: Johnson announces his "War on Poverty." |
March: Malcolm X leaves the Nation of Islam following conflict with its leader, Elijah Muhammad.
June: Hundreds of volunteers arrive in the South for SNCC's Freedom Summer, three of whom are soon murdered in Philadelphia, Mississippi.
July: Johnson signs Civil Rights Act outlawing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
August: Congress passes Gulf of Tonkin resolution authorizing military force in Vietnam. Democratic National Convention rebuffs the request by the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party to be seated in favor of all-white state delegation.
November: Johnson wins a landslide reelection.
|January: King's first visit to Selma, Alabama, where mass meetings and demonstrations will build through the winter. ||1965 ||February: Malcolm X speaks in Selma in support of movement, three weeks before his assassination in New York by Nation of Islam members. |
| At Canaan's Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-68 || |
|March: Voting rights movement in Selma peaks with "Bloody Sunday" police attacks and, two weeks later, a successful march of thousands to Montgomery. |
August: King rebuffed by Los Angeles officials when he attempts to advocate reforms after the Watts riots.
| ||March: First U.S. combat troops arrive in South Vietnam. Johnson's "We Shall Overcome" speech makes his most direct embrace of the civil rights movement.|
May: Vietnam "teach-in" protest in Berkeley attracts 30,000.
June: Influential federal Moynihan Report describes the "pathologies" of black family structure.
August: Johnson signs the Voting Rights Act. Five days later, the Watts riots begin in Los Angeles.
|January: King moves his family into a Chicago slum apartment to mark his first sustained movement in a Northern city. |
June: King and Stokely Carmichael continue James Meredith's March Against Fear after Meredith is shot and wounded. Carmichael gives his first "black power" speech.
July: King's marches for fair housing in Chicago face bombs, bricks, and "white power" shouts.
|1966 ||February: Operation Rolling Thunder, massive U.S. bombing of North Vietnam, begins. |
May: Stokely Carmichael wins the presidency of SNCC and quickly turns the organization away from nonviolence.
October: National Organization for Women founded, modeled after black civil rights groups.
|April: King's speech against the Vietnam War at New York's Riverside Church raises a storm of criticism |
December: King announces plans for major campaign against poverty in Washington, D.C., for 1968.
|1967 ||May: Huey Newton leads Black Panthers in armed demonstration in California state assembly. |
June: Johnson nominates former NAACP lawyer Thurgood Marshall to the Supreme Court.
July: Riots in Newark and Detroit.
October: Massive mobilization against the Vietnam War in Washington, D.C.
|March: King joins strike of Memphis sanitation workers. |
April: King gives his "Mountaintop" speech in Memphis. A day later, he is assassinated at the Lorraine Motel.
|1968 ||January: In Tet Offensive, Communist guerillas stage a surprise coordinated attack across South Vietnam. |
March: Johnson cites divisions in the country over the war for his decision not to seek reelection in 1968.
|The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators, and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier
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Author: Colin Woodard
Brand: Colin Woodard
“A thorough and engaging history of Maine’s rocky coast and its tough-minded people.”—Boston Herald
“[A] well-researched and well-written cultural and ecological history of stubborn perseverance.”—USA Today
For more than four hundred years the people of coastal Maine have clung to their rocky, wind-swept lands, resisting outsiders’ attempts to control them while harvesting the astonishing bounty of the Gulf of Maine. Today’s independent, self-sufficient lobstermen belong to the communities imbued with a European sense of ties between land and people, but threatened by the forces of homogenization spreading up the eastern seaboard.
In the tradition of William Warner’s Beautiful Swimmers, veteran journalist Colin Woodard (author of American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good) traces the history of the rugged fishing communities that dot the coast of Maine and the prized crustacean that has long provided their livelihood. Through forgotten wars and rebellions, and with a deep tradition of resistance to interference by people “from away,” Maine’s lobstermen have defended an earlier vision of America while defying the “tragedy of the commons”—the notion that people always overexploit their shared property. Instead, these icons of American individualism represent a rare example of true communal values and collaboration through grit, courage, and hard-won wisdom.
- The Lobster Coast Rebels Rusticators and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier
|The War on Cops: How the New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe
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Author: Heather Mac Donald
Violent crime has been rising sharply in many American cities after two decades of decline. Homicides jumped nearly 17 percent in 2015 in the largest 50 cities, the biggest one-year increase since 1993. The reason is what Heather Mac Donald first identified nationally as the “Ferguson effect”: Since the 2014 police shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, officers have been backing off of proactive policing, and criminals are becoming emboldened.
This book expands on Mac Donald’s groundbreaking and controversial reporting on the Ferguson effect and the criminal-justice system. It deconstructs the central narrative of the Black Lives Matter movement: that racist cops are the greatest threat to young black males. On the contrary, it is criminals and gangbangers who are responsible for the high black homicide death rate.
The War on Cops exposes the truth about officer use of force and explodes the conceit of “mass incarceration.” A rigorous analysis of data shows that crime, not race, drives police actions and prison rates. The growth of proactive policing in the 1990s, along with lengthened sentences for violent crime, saved thousands of minority lives. In fact, Mac Donald argues, no government agency is more dedicated to the proposition that “black lives matter” than today’s data-driven, accountable police department.
Mac Donald gives voice to the many residents of high-crime neighborhoods who want proactive policing. She warns that race-based attacks on the criminal-justice system, from the White House on down, are eroding the authority of law and putting lives at risk. This book is a call for a more honest and informed debate about policing, crime, and race.
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