Thu. Feb. 16, 2012
September 14, 2010
Pulitzer Prize--winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson discusses her first book, The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration.
In The Warmth of Other Suns, Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life. From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. Having interviewed more than a thousand people and gained access to new data and official records, she recounts how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.
Wilkerson tells this story through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet blue-collar success and, in old age, voted for Barack Obama when he ran for an Illinois Senate seat; sharp and quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God; and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as part of a glitteringly successful medical career, which allowed him to purchase a grand home where he often threw exuberant parties.
Wilkerson captures their first treacherous and exhausting cross-country trips by car and train and their new lives in colonies that grew into ghettos, as well as how they changed these cities with southern food, faith, and culture and improved them with discipline, drive, and hard work.
- The Best of 2010 Series
- African American Culture Series
- Ken Burns: Unforgivable Blackness Series
- Civil Rights Movement Series
Presented by WGBH and Harvard Book Store
The Crazy Old White Man From The Hood Book http://www.archive.org/details/TheCrazyOldWhiteManFromTheHood_488