Leonard Pitts Jr.

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Leonard Pitts Jr. was born and raised in Southern California. He is a columnist for the Miami Herald and won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for commentary. He was also a finalist for the Pulitzer in 1992. In 1997, Pitts took first place for commentary in division four (newspapers with a circulation of more than 300,000) in the American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors' Ninth Annual Writing Awards competition. His columns on the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman have garnered much attention from his peers and readers alike.

Pitts's column, "We'll Go Forward From This Moment," an angry and defiant open letter to the terrorists, generated upwards of 30,000 emails and has since been set to music, reprinted in poster form, r
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Leonard Pitts Jr. From a number of things, actually. For me, books often start with themes and places even more than with characters.
For whatever reason, I've been…more
From a number of things, actually. For me, books often start with themes and places even more than with characters.
For whatever reason, I've been particularly fascinated in recent years with America in the 1940s, which I view as the hinge point of the 20th century and the era which, more than any other, shaped the world we live in today. I wanted the challenge of trying to recreate that time in a book.
Thematically, I wanted to write about faith - not as something clean or easy as it is often portrayed, but as something hard and difficult to hold onto when the whole world is burning down around you - and yet, more critical to hold onto for just that reason.
And then, there's race. We often hear various firebrands prophesize a looming race war. My contention is that we've already had it, and it was called World War II. The war is not often framed in that way, but consider: Hitler sought to annihilate the Jews because he considered them an inferior race. He turned on the Russians whom he also considered his biological lessers. The Japanese ran riot in Asia, believing other Asians their inferiors. And America plunged in to fight those bigoted ideologies with...wait for it...a Jim Crow military. As that military struggled overseas, Japanese Americans were being interred, Mexican-Americans were being beaten up by soldiers and sailors in L.A. and African-Americans were enduring mass casualty attacks from white Americans here at home. All this at a time when the nation was theoretically pulling together for victory.
So those are the three streams of thought that came together to produce "The Last Thing You Surrender." I'm looking forward to hearing what you think.(less)
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More of Leonard's books…
“Not everyone has something to say. This will not stop them from saying it.”
Leonard Pitts Jr.

“Sometimes, you simply must follow your heart," she said. "No reasonable man can blame you for that." A smile. "No reasonable woman can, either.”
Leonard Pitts Jr., Freeman

“Only by vigilance toward everyone's rights do we protect anyone's rights.”
Leonard Pitts Jr.

Topics Mentioning This Author

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Around the World ...: Kim H. Around the World in Books Never-Ending Challenge (Circumnavigator) 13 23 Aug 28, 2012 05:23PM  
Literary Fiction ...: Coming Attractions - 2012 62 166 Oct 05, 2012 03:19PM  
Literary Fiction ...: Discussion: Freeman 170 179 Nov 12, 2012 12:11PM  
Literary Fiction ...: BCALA Literary Awards for 2013 5 51 Feb 11, 2013 07:59AM  
Literary Fiction ...: Male African American Writers 11 210 Apr 24, 2014 10:04AM  



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