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Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  129,354 Ratings  ·  5,717 Reviews
Dreams from My Father is Barack Obama's remarkable memoir. The son of a black African father and a white American mother, Obama was only two years old when his father walked out on the family. Many years later, Obama receives a phone call from Nairobi: his father is dead. This sudden news inspires an emotional odyssey for Obama, determined to learn the truth of his father' ...more
Kindle Edition, 466 pages
Published June 3rd 2007 by Canongate Books (first published July 1995)
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Mason Owens Like any good good my edition doesn't have a table of contents.

I was able to eventually separate it as Part 1 which runs until his Chicago days, I…more
Like any good good my edition doesn't have a table of contents.

I was able to eventually separate it as Part 1 which runs until his Chicago days, I think that is a bit past where I last left off.

In origins though Obama gives a very candid look into his insights. Possibly because he was not so immersed into politics he allows his hatred to flow unlike anyone seeking election would.

As far as origin it is a hefty one, the child looks up to the most deplorable characters and echoes some of the sickest words to live by without second thought as if they are gospel and not some dishonest tacts

More onto origins, the author talks out of turn a lot, most of this childhood stories sounds so bullshit that it is hard to take half of them at face value. Each instance reeks of the feels that after the event he thought of the perfect thing to say which is inserted into his manuscript. Another point that relates to his audacity to Brian Williams the story is how he writes about his mother being younger than eight as if those events happened to him just yesterday in full detail with so many extras clearly thrown in just detracts from what could of been real.

Still as a character study it gives great insight into his inner workings especially when you consider how often he tries to Alexander Hamilton his past. (less)
Gordon Ralph I got mine through Amazon and for a better price, as I like to by used books through their more buying choices section...I hope that helps you.
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Community Reviews

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Jan 19, 2008 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the undecided
Recommended to Sarah by: Liz
As Super Tuesday approaches and we try to separate empty promises and strategic moves from real, actual thoughts and goals, I couldn’t have read a better book than Dreams From My Father.

Here’s why: even though I didn’t realize it when I picked it up, Obama wrote this book over ten years ago, when he was fresh out of law school and long before he was worrying about what people wanted to hear. It is, I think, a great way to “get to know” the candidate outside of the media, the hype, and the confus
Aug 04, 2008 Michelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
With Barack Obama running for president, I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at who this candidate was. I had been warned by another friend (not a Obama supporter, I should note) that it was poorly written and its message unclear. This perplexed me a bit since that had been contrary to what it seemed like everyone had been saying.

Well, I, on the other hand, found it a completely absorbing read. It's well-written and an interesting story. I wish everyone could read it; there are so m
❁ بــدريــه ❁

بالبداية ..
الكتاب تم كتابته قبل أن يصبح باراك أوباما
رئيساً لأمريكا أو حتى كان يفكر في ترشيح
نفسه لهذا المنصب و بالتالي لا توجد أي
أحداث يمكن تجميلها !

فهي سيرة ذاتية لشخص يروي تجربة حياته
بلا أي تعقيدات . كتاب لا يستمد قيمته فقط
من كونه السيرة الذاتية لرئيس . إنما قيمته تكمن
في شخصية باراك أوباما، أصوله
و حياته شخصية، تستحق سيرته الذاتية أن تُقرأ
و تُروى بصرف النظر عن كونه رئيساً ..

في الفصل الأول و هو " الجذور "

يحكي أوباما عن والده كما سمعها من جديه
و من والدته كما يحكي عن جديه و كيف تقبل
فكرة زواج
Feb 27, 2017 Sam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In early 2017, for many people in the U.S. and abroad, Obama nostalgia is real and rampant. I used the moment to look back at Barack Obama before he was president, before he was a US Senator and a state senator for Illinois, and discover the making of the man in his memoir Dreams from My Father. Overall, I'd give this 3.5 stars and round up to 4 stars. I very much enjoyed parts of Obama's journey to adulthood, especially his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia which I found interesting and well-wr ...more
Dec 26, 2016 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audiobook in the waning days of Obama's presidency. Dreams from My Father is about Obama's family, his childhood, and how he got his start in community organizing in Chicago.

Some of my favorite stories were about Barack's grandparents, his memories of his mother and father, and finally, his visit to Kenya to meet his African relatives. It was interesting to read this memoir, first published in 1995, and to recognize all that Obama has accomplished since writing it.

The audio f
Jan 23, 2009 Chris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: political
This is one of those books that I want to buy for everyone I know. Apart from any of the political ideas in the book or whether or not one is excited by his presidency, Obama is a fantastic writer -- this is one of the best memoirs I have ever read. Apart from an occasional slip into melodramatic prose (very occasional, and certainly less than the average memoir), the prose balanced clarity and description, and Obama very consciously keeps from slipping into nostalgia or over-idealizing any time ...more
Oct 15, 2016 Khadidja marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
i don't know why i find the title funny! is it the fact that Barack Obama inherited stories and race meanwhile Trump started his business with a small loan of a million dollar and later inherited 200 million dollars! hmm...

In the introduction, Obama writes that looking back on this book after the passage of over a decade, he winces at inelegant phrasing, and wishes that he could excise perhaps fifty of its four hundred and fifty pages. That's the kind of self-critique with which this book abounds—honest and very deliberately even-handed. It's a critique I agree with, by the way—Obama has a tendency to go off on slight rhetorical flights which may sound good when delivered in a speech, but which need to be tempered ...more
Jun 04, 2012 غيداء rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
قرأت هذا الكتاب بناء على نصيحة من حكيم، وإلى اليوم أشعر بالسعادة لأنني قرأته، كتاب ثمين يستحق القراءة، بل وتجب قراءته من وجهة نظري. كنت قد بدأت في قراءة النسخة الإنجليزية ولكن اتضح لي بأنها صعبة جدا فقمت بشراء النسخة العربية. الكتاب عبارة عن ثلاثة أجزاء: أوباما طفلا، أوباما مراهقا و أوباما ناشطا اجتماعيا.
الكتاب يحكي تأملات أوباما في الحياة، التي أعيت الكثير :)، يسرد لك الأحداث بطريقة سينيمائية، يربطها لك كذلك بحبكة هوليوودية :). يحكي لك قصة حب أبيه و أمه، موافقة جده وجدته على مضض، ظلم جده لأبيه
Did Barack Obama write this book himself? Man, it was so full of cliches that I almost threw it against the wall, had it not belonged to the library. The most interesting parts take place out of the U.S. Too much concentration on frustrated-black-man syndrome, trying to find a black community and not enough (for me) on how he fared within this community as mixed. Even though HE chose one ethnicity over another, I want to know how he was treated because other people take notice of a mixture withi ...more
Apr 02, 2015 Diana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great read!...about understanding and finding out your history....(paperback!)
Luís C.
The first publication of this book dates from 1995, when its author was only 34 years, well before his presidential bid and before his first election as senator from Illinois, which limits the risk of hagiographic publications more recent since the text does not cover the real policy of his life. 34 would be short for an autobiography, but that's not really what this is, especially since the story gives an important place to the reflections of a man in search of his place, and his black identity ...more
Feb 01, 2017 Antigone rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir-biography
This is the first of the books written by Barack Obama. He was thirty-three at the time of its publication, a graduate of Harvard Law and practicing in Chicago. Thoughts of a run for the Senate were beginning to coalesce. He was, at this stage, an exacting man. So when he tells us this is a story of race and inheritance, we may be certain it is precisely that.

His is a strong and sometimes stiff accounting of life as the son of an African father and a white American mother - that straddle of our
What a thought-provoking book! The book is split into three sections (Origins, Chicago and Kenya). I tried splitting up my reading of it in roughly the same manner since it's easier for me to get through a non-fiction book if I intersperse it with fiction.

I think each section left me with a different series of questions. Origins left me thinking about community: its value, how we choose it, are chosen by it, and what it means to be within and without community. Origins also made me ponder how ch
Aug 28, 2007 Tasha rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no
Book was boring. Lots of redundancy, meaning it was the same topic over and over again…I wouldn’t recommend.
Nov 20, 2008 Manny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even if Obama weren't about to become President, this would be quite a worthwhile book. I wasn't crazy about his style, but he has a lot of interesting things to say, and comes across as a very sympathetic person.
Mar 26, 2007 kxm rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Americans.
Barack Obama's life not only makes for a great story, it shows a lot about the character of the man telling it--both in the way he tells it, but also in the events that happened and the way he handled them. I am impressed by his level of honesty about himself--he does not paint himself to be pristine, but makes himself very human. It is in this exposure of his vulnerabilities, his fears, his insecurities that he becomes like us--simply human. On that level, we can connect to the story of his lif ...more
Nov 10, 2008 Kaylam2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Kaylam2012 by: the school
Have you ever read a book that just made you flat out mad? Well the book “ Dreams of my Father ” by Barack Obama is one those books. This book lacks common sense that ever book should have. It pays so much attention to characters that do not deserve the time of day. Barack makes his life sound unbearable when in reality his life is really easy.

First, I feel that Obama is making too much fuss over whether he is white or black. As an interracial child that I am, I feel that all you should know wha
martin eden
I really enjoyed reading this book. Barack Obama is revealing his doubts, his fears and questions about who he really is. This book is a trip back to his origins to find answers.
My favorite parts were the chapters about his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia and his trip to Kenya to meet his family. His life was amazing! Neither black, nor white, trying to understand his mother and grandparents... But actually for some people more black than white... And searching for answers in his African orig
3.5 stars. It’s difficult for me to rate this memoir because I deeply respect Barack Obama as a person. This comes at a time of deep division in the country and he remains widely appreciated by many yet politically ostracized by some. His legacy has greatly improved the lives of millions of people, but his politics leaves much to be desired. He has undeniably shaped my world views and I have come to regard him as one of the most intelligent men to ever hold that office. Dreams From My Father fee ...more
Mikey B.
This is quite a remarkable book considering that this individual is now President of the U.S. It was written when he was far removed from the Presidential radar.

It is well written and the narrative is very vivid. The book is divided into three sections with very little inter-connectedness between them.

The first is about his roots and growing up with his mother and grand-parents – in far flung regions of the world – Hawaii and Indonesia. The second is focused on Chicago and the community work he
mai ahmd
Dec 22, 2011 mai ahmd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
كتبه باراك قبل أن يعتلي عرش السلطة ولا علاقة لهذا الكتاب بكونه رئيس أكبر دولة في العالم بل ربما قد يكون سببا في إيصاله لكرسي الرئاسة ..
وفيه ينقل باراك سيرة حياته بين جديه في هاواي ثم ذكرياته مع والدته في إندونيسيا حين تزوجت للمرة الثانية وهناك عاش باراك حياة ريفية عركته الحياة نتيجة لتباين الحياة التي عاشها هناك عن أمريكا
يعرض أيضا قصة عودته لأمريكا حيث تبدأ حياة أخرى في إحدى المدارس الخاصة بدأ يعاني فيها من ضياع الهوية والتفرقة العنصرية وحين بدأت تراوه الحيرة في الإنتماء إلى أيا من اللونين !
Apr 11, 2007 Janine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ppl interested in memoirs. specifically about African Diaspora
Reading Senator Obama's book reminded me of Umberto Eco's seminal work, Role of the Reader. (Hazily reminded me, as I read it over 10 years ago.) In the first part of that book, Eco conjures the idea of archetypical readers and discusses the different ways that each reader approaches a text. As I read Dreams from My Father I read it as two different readers. First, I read it as a book lover and critic; second, as a voter. (Listed in order of priority, I must confess.)
As a memoir, I thought this
Aug 05, 2013 Rola rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
سأل باراك الصغير زوج أمه ذات يوم : (لماذا قتل الرجل ؟)
- "لإنه كان ضعيفا "
- "هذا كل شئ ؟ "
فهز لولو كتفيه و قال: " عادة ما يكون هذا كافيا، فالناس يستغلون ضعف الآخرين، إنهم بالضبط مثل الدول في هذا الأمر ؛ فالرجل القوي يستولي علي أرض الرجل الضعيف ، و يجعل الضعيف يعمل في حقوله، و إذا كانت زوجة الرجل الضعيف جميلة فإن القوي سيأخذها ،،، أيهما تفضل أن تكون ؟؟ "
لم أجب عليه، ، فنظر بعينين شبه مغمضتين إلي السماء، و قال في النهاية و هو ينهض علي قدميه : " من الإفضل أن تكون قويا، ، و إذا لم تستطع إن تكون قوي
Mar 31, 2008 Lula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, autobiography, oxy
The reviews I have perused are about people's feelings about their projections of what Obama means to them. Reviewers are sharing their feelings about the symbolism of Obama, and not reviewing the book. And as a symbol - wow - what a wide variety of feelings from far extremes he represents.

Thirteen years ago I read this out of curiosity. We just weren't sure what he would have to say. At the time it wasn't exactly a bestseller. But it was worth checking out to see if I recognized anyone. He mana
22/3 - I'm Australian, I've never spent any extended period of time living in the US, so all of my opinions are those of an outsider looking in. I'm also not much of a political watcher so I don't know all the ins and outs of my own country's political structure, let alone that of America's, so please excuse any mistakes I make or incorrect words I use. I have the political knowledge of the average young teenager.

One of this year's POPSUGAR challenge categories was a political memoir - Barack Ob
May 08, 2009 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anybody
Recommended to Eric by: Lotsa peoples
Dreams from My Father

I give this a superlative rating because of its clear statement of what it means to be black in a racialized environment, and because of Obama's ability to confront the complexities of his own biracial/multicultural heritage without succumbing to romanticism or denying any aspect of his heritage. He opts for a black identity for the same reason nearly all black/white biracials do -- a white identity isn't possible when you're his color and being white requires a dimmed aware
Apr 17, 2008 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Barack Obama
Dreams From My Father
New York: Three Rivers Press, 2004
453 pp. $13.95

The United States is recognized as a nation of immigrants with the ability to re-invent themselves and adapt to the culture of their adopted home. However, it is the children of these immigrants who seek authenticity in forgotten and disregarded ethnic traditions, in search of their roots, of an identity. “Dreams From My Father,” Barack Obama’s autobiography recounts the odyssey Obama embarks upon, in
Jan 21, 2009 Trena rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I resisted reading this book for a long time based solely on the title. I hated to think that our President(!!!!-happy day today) would have fantasies about his absent father and imagine him to be all that is good and just in the world while ignoring or perhaps even resenting his mother, the one who actually raised him and was there through all the dirty diapers, report cards, and snotty noses. However, I did intend to read it eventually so when one of my book clubs chose it I checked it out.

When Barack Obama’s father was a young man, he went with his father-in-law and friends to a bar in Hawaii where a man loudly complained about having to sit “next to a nigger.”

“The room fell quiet and people turned to my father, expecting a fight. Instead, my father stood up, walked over to the man, smiled, and proceeded to lecture him about the folly of bigotry, the promise of the American dream, and the universal rights of man.”

The man apologized, and he tried to show how sorry he was by givin
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North Yorkshire L...: Thoughts on the book 1 4 Mar 19, 2017 12:08PM  
Around the Year i...: Dreams from My Father, by Barack Obama 1 10 Mar 02, 2017 01:48PM  
Obama-mania 64 290 Jan 03, 2016 01:43PM  
Service Wika Pemanas Air 081314574443 1 3 Nov 16, 2015 08:25AM  
Can you recommend me other books written in this beautiful prose? 10 61 Jul 26, 2015 03:29PM  
  • Obama: From Promise to Power
  • Madam Secretary: A Memoir
  • True Compass: A Memoir
  • The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama
  • Michelle: A Biography
  • A Singular Woman: The Untold Story of Barack Obama's Mother
  • My American Journey
  • My Life
  • Promises to Keep: On Life and Politics
  • Barack Obama: The Story
  • Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America
  • Personal History
  • All Too Human
  • The Audacity to Win: The Inside Story and Lessons of Barack Obama's Historic Victory
  • A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton
  • Renegade: The Making of a President
  • White House Diary
  • The Promise: President Obama, Year One
Barack Obama is the 44th President of the United States of America. He is the first African-American President to be elected President of the United States, and was the first to be nominated for President by a major U.S. political party. He was the junior U.S. Senator from Illinois from 2005 until he resigned on November 16, 2008, following his election to the Presidency.

Barack Obama is the son of
More about Barack Obama...

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“The worst thing that colonialism did was to cloud our view of our past.” 72 likes
“The study of law can be disappointing at times, a matter of applying narrow rules and arcane procedure to an uncooperative reality; a sort of glorified accounting that serves to regulate the affairs of those who have power--and that all too often seeks to explain, to those who do not, the ultimate wisdom and justness of their condition.

But that's not all the law is. The law is also memory; the law also records a long-running conversation, a nation arguing with its conscience.”
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