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Yes We Did?: From King's Dream to Obama's Promise


Yes We Did?: From King's Dream to Obama's Promise Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Barack Obama's presidential victory demonstrated unprecedented racial progress on a national level. Not since the civil rights legislation of the 1960s has the United States seen such remarkable advances. During Obama's historic campaign, however, prominent African Americans voiced concern about his candidacy, demonstrating a divided agenda among black political leaders. The assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. changed perceptions about the nature of African American leadership. In Yes We Did?, Cynthia Fleming examines the expansion of black leadership from grassroots to the national arena, beginning with Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. DuBois and progressing through contemporary leaders including Harold Ford Jr., Louis Farrakhan, Jesse Jackson Jr., and Barack Obama. She emphasizes socioeconomic status, female black leadership, media influence, black conservatism, and generational conflict. Fleming had unprecedented access to a wide range of activists, including Carol Mosley Braun, Al Sharpton, and John Hope Franklin. She deftly maps the history of black leadership in America, illuminating both lingering disadvantages and obstacles that developed after the civil rights movement. Among those interviewed were community activists and scholars, as well as former freedom riders, sit-in activists, and others who were intimately involved in the civil rights struggle and close to Dr. King. Their personal accounts reflect the diverse viewpoints of the black community and offer a new understanding of the history of African American leadership, its current status, and its uncertain future.

Book News Annotation:

In this narrative, Fleming has written an in-depth history of the civil rights movement through the vehicle of the words of participants in the historic events. Seamless and gripping, the stories of 42 African Americans, who include activists, soldiers, journalists, historians, a mayor, city council member, and lifelong Southerners who lived through Jim Crow, provide a personal perspective to the dreams, struggle, and realities of African Americans from the 1960s to the present. Julian Bond, Carol Moseley Braun, George Curry, John Lewis, Eleanor Holmes Norton, and Andrew Young are among the well-known figures who Fleming interviewed. Fleming (history, U. of Tennessee, Knoxville) delves into the interactions between participants in early civil rights actions, describing the generational conflicts, the use and importance of the media, the developing goals of the SNCC and other groups, and how these goals have changed today. The result is a complex and satisfying account of the history and context that links Martin Luther King with America's first Black president. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Product Details

Fleming, Cynthia Griggs
University Press of Kentucky
Foreword by:
Norton, Eleanor Holmes
Norton, Eleanor Holmes
Modern - 21st Century
Ethnic Studies - African American Studies - General
Political Process - Leadership
African American leadership
United States Politics and government.
Ethnic Studies - African American Studies - Histor
African American Studies-Black Heritage
Politics - General
Publication Date:
9.22x6.34x1.08 in. 1.36 lbs.

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » African American Studies » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Politics
History and Social Science » World History » General

Yes We Did?: From King's Dream to Obama's Promise New Hardcover
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Product details 281 pages University Press of Kentucky - English 9780813125602 Reviews:
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