Diane McWhorter is an American journalist, commentator and author who has written extensively about race and the history of civil rights. She won the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction and the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize in 2002 for Carry Me Home: Birmingham, Alabama, the Climactic Battle of the Civil Rights Revolution. Now with a new afterword, the Pulitzer Prize-winning dramatic account of the Civil Rights Era’s climactic battle in Birmingham as the movement, led by Martin Luther King, Jr., brought down the institutions of segregation.
In 2004 she also published a book aimed at younger readers aged 9 and up which won the Booklist Editor’s Choice Books for Youth award, A Dream of Freedom: The Civil Rights Movement from 1954 to 1968.
“The Year of Birmingham,” 1963, was a cataclysmic turning point in America’s long civil rights struggle. Child demonstrators faced down police dogs and fire hoses in huge nonviolent marches against segregation. Ku Klux Klansmen retaliated by bombing the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, killing four young black girls. Diane McWhorter, daughter of a prominent Birmingham family, weaves together police and FBI records, archival documents, interviews with black activists and Klansmen, and personal memories into an extraordinary narrative of the personalities and events that brought about America’s second emancipation.
In a new afterword—reporting last encounters with hero Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth and describing the current drastic anti-immigration laws in Alabama—the author demonstrates that Alabama remains a civil rights crucible.
Booklist Editor’s Choice: Books for Youth
In this history of the modern Civil Rights movement, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Diane McWhorter focuses on the monumental events that occurred between 1954 (the year of Brown versus the Board of Education) and 1968 (the year that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assasinated). Beginning with an overview of the movement since the end of the Civil War, McWhorter also discusses such events as the 1956 MTGS bus boycott, the 1961 Freedom Rides, and the 1963 demonstration in Birmingham, Alabama, among others.
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