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All Deliberate Speed: Reflections on the First Half-Century of Brown v. Board of Educationby Charles J. Ogletree
Synopses & Reviews
On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the doctrine of "separate but equal" was unconstitutional. Charles J. Ogletree, Jr., was not even two at the time, and his family, farm workers in southern California, had scant knowledge of how keenly the ruling would affect them. In All Deliberate Speed Ogletree examines the personal ramifications of the decision for him and his family — his childhood in the wake of the Brown decision, his student days at Stanford and Harvard Law, his immersion in the Boston busing crisis — and its meaning for all Americans.
Presenting a vivid pageant of historical characters including Thurgood Marshall, Martin Luther King, Jr., Earl Warren, Anita Hill, and Clarence Thomas, Ogletree discusses the ambivalence of our judicial system, the increasing legal challenges to affirmative action, and the issue of reparations. Informed throughout by brilliant legal insight, All Deliberate Speed compellingly traces the history of race and integration in American society, and will promote intense debate and reconsideration.
"[O]ffers readers an honest if fractured account of one man's firsthand experiences with one of the most significant court decisions of the 20th century and brings new insights into America's continuing struggle with race and integration." Publishers Weekly
"A bold and original analysis of the complex and often surprising effects of Brown v. Board on American society, All Deliberate Speed is a shocking document that reveals how the great reforms once promised by this landmark decision were systematically undermined. Ogletree's book should force all of us — scholars and general readers alike — to reconsider the sometimes ironic legacies of the Civil Rights movement and the role of race in the American legal system." Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
"Charles Ogletree's analytic memoir of the Brown case brings history alive. One of America's most distinguished professor-lawyers personalizes this historic case in a compelling and dramatic way. This is a must-read as well as a great read." Alan Dershowitz, author of The Case For Israel
"All Deliberate Speed, a provocative and intimate reflection on Brown v. Board of Education, is not only Charles Ogletree's story, it is the story of an entire generation, male and female of all races. All Deliberate Speed reminds us that the 'baby boomer' generation will also pass on a racial legacy. As the beneficiaries of Brown's legacy, this work informs us that the struggle against racism is not completed until its promise of racial equality is realized for everyone." Anita Hill
"All Deliberate Speed is a remarkable and very readable account of one young man's coming of age during the civil rights movement. It is downright exciting to read how the movement shaped the career of the author, Charles Ogletree, into a leading scholar-activist. Ogletree fully appreciates the work and sacrifices of Thurgood Marshall's generation. This is a 'must read.'" John Hope Franklin, Professor of History Emeritus, Duke University, Author of From Slavery to Freedom
Book News Annotation:
While the Supreme Court's Brown ruling historically signified the official end of racial segregation in the United States, a critical flaw was contained in the decision by the calculated instruction that desegregation should proceed with "all deliberate speed," argues Ogletree (Harvard Law School). Ogletree combines discussion of the legal battles leading up to and following Brown, a decidedly negative appraisal of the ruling's relevance to the educational opportunities of the majority of African Americans, and a relatively more positive exploration of its impact on his own life and the opportunities it provided him at Stanford University and Harvard Law.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Ogletree examines the personal ramifications of the Brown vs. the Board of Education decision for him and his family — his childhood in the wake of the Brown decision, his student days at Stanford and Harvard Law, his immersion in the Boston busing crisis — and its meaning for all Americans.
About the Author
A professor at Harvard Law School and a leading civil rights authority, Charles J. Ogletree, Jr. has represented Anita Hill and the plaintiffs in the Tulsa Race Riots case. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Table of Contents
Ch. 1 The Significance of Brown 3
Ch. 2 The Legacy of Segregation: What Brown Meant in Merced 15
Ch. 3 Brown's Promise: Black Students at Stanford 41
Ch. 4 Brown's Failure: Resistance in Boston 57
Ch. 5 Brown's Challenge: Carrying the Torch 79
Ch. 6 Life Before Brown 97
Ch. 7 Defeating Jim Crow 111
Ch. 8 Resistance to Brown 124
Ch. 9 Marshall and King: Two Paths to Justice 135
Ch. 10 Reversing the Brown Mandate: The Bakke Challenge 147
Ch. 11 The Legacy of Thurgood Marshall 167
Ch. 12 The Rise of Clarence Thomas 183
Ch. 13 Who's Getting Lynched?: Hill v. Thomas 200
Ch. 14 Justice Thomas: A New Era in Race Matters 218
Ch. 15 The Michigan Cases: Mixed Signals 239
Ch. 16 Meeting the Educational Challenges of the Twenty-First Century 259
Ch. 17 Addressing the Racial Divide: Reparations 274
Ch. 18 The Integration Ideal: Sobering Reflections 294
Frequently Cited Cases 347
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