Feb 10, 11
Read in January, 2011
At least once a week I join the writer of this book for a roundtable at the only bar that matters in Montgomery, Alabama, El Rey Burrito Lounge. Two-dozen books into a 40+ year career, Wayne remains an inspiration to us. This latest book of his is a fascinating history of players in the Civil Rights movement and its aftermath who don't often get their due. From the 1957 murder of Willie Edwards through the men and women whose investigative reporting kept the abuses of segregation in the public eye to the founding of the Southern Poverty Law Center, the book is a testament to progressive humanism: it demonstrates how social justice depends on dozens of anonymous heroes as well as iconic inspirations. The style mixes history and memoir, with illuminating asides into the backgrounds and private lives of its cast of characters. For anyone interested in Alabama history, the Civil Rights story, or the South in general, it's a must read.