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Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family

Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:



Condoleezza Rice is a person of broad and deep accomplishment.  At various times she has excelled as an expert diplomat, brilliant political scientist, and trained concert pianist.  Her achievements run the gamut from helping to oversee the collapse of the Soviet Union, to working to protect the country in the aftermath of 9-11, to becoming only the second woman - and the first black woman ever — to serve as Secretary of State.


But until she was 25 she never learned to swim.


Not because she wouldn't have loved to, but because when she was a little girl in Birmingham, Alabama, Public Safety Commissioner Bull Connor decided he'd rather shut down the city's pools than give black citizens access.


Throughout the 1950's, Birmingham's black middle class largely succeeded in insulating their children from the more corrosive effects of racism, providing multiple support systems to ensure the next generation would live better than the last.  But by 1963, when Rice was applying herself to her third grader's lessons, the situation had grown intolerable.  Birmingham was an environment where blacks were expected to keep their head down and do what they were told — or face violent consequences...where even the hint of protest could prompt police beatings and blasts from a fire hose... where racially motivated bombings were so common the media dubbed the city "Bombingham."


So how was Rice able to achieve what she ultimately did?


This is the story of Condoleezza Rice that has never been told, not that of an ultra-accomplished world leader, but of a little girl trying to find her place in a hostile world and of two remarkable parents – and an extended family and community – that made all the difference. On the shoulders of individuals both black and white, young Condoleezza Rice stood and looked out on a world where anything was possible — and in a way that is singularly fascinating, Extraordinary, Ordinary People takes us not just through Rice’s childhood but, also, her twenties and thirties as she builds a record of achievement that positions her for involvement in world-historical events.


From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

CONDOLEEZZA RICE was the 66th United States Secretary of State and the first black woman to ever hold that office.  Prior to that, she was the first woman to serve as National Security Advisor.  She currently teaches at Stanford University.

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

A Memoir of Family
Random House Audio
Read by:
Rice, Condoleezza
Rice, Condoleezza
General Biography
Personal Memoirs
Biography - General
memoir;politics;autobiography;family;history;biography;non-fiction;alabama;african americans;segregation
Edition Description:
Eight CD
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
5.92 x 5.11 x 1.08 in 0.5 lb

Related Subjects

Audio Books » Nonfiction
Biography » General
Biography » Political
Biography » Women
History and Social Science » Politics » General

Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family
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$ In Stock
Product details pages Random House Audio - English 9780307750631 Reviews:
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