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Better Day Coming: Blacks and Equality, 1890-2000 Paperback – June 25, 2002
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Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
However, this book doesn't claim to be a sociological study but a historical account of 110 years. In that sense it falls short.
Better Day Coming's greatest weakness is its attempt to cover the period of 1890-2000. The last chapter opens immediately after the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., but apparently the author thinks little of import followed the civil rights leader's murder. The years between 1968 and 2000 are covered in a sketchy 14 pages that fail to mention prominent figures such as the Rev. Al Sharpton, and Fairclough dances around current issues relevant to the black community. Rodney King gets more mention than Jesse Jackson. The author is an educator and the last chapter resembles a textbook that acknowledges the latter material is insignificant and probably won't be covered on the final exam. Better Days Coming would have been much stronger if it focused only on the period between Reconstruction and the death of Dr. King.
Nonetheless, Professor Fairclough is a crisp writer. Although the problem noted above (along with one superfluous chapter that inexplicably rehashes previous material) hurts this book, it has strengths.
Better Day Coming predictably chronicles the lives of such prominent luminaries as Ida Wells, Booker T. Washington, W.E.Read more ›
A good deal of this history is focussed on the personalities that stood out in black history, from militants such as the forthright campaigner against lynching Ida B. Wells at one end of the spectrum, to the black Americans Samuel Smiles - Booker T. Washington, with many others including Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey and Martin Luther King. Fairclough doesn't ignore some of the movements (the communist party, the NAACP, the Black Panthers, etc) or events (the civil rights movement, the legal battles, the battle for integration, etc). In short he captures a good deal of the black Americans twentieth century experience and struggle for equality.
If there is a shortcoming in the book it is Fairclough can be on occasions a little wishy-washy in his narrative. Sometimes in his efforts to achieve "balance" he appears a little lame, merely repeating both sides of the argument without making a judgement, or calculating the costs and benefits of actions on the struggle for black equality.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an excellent book that has been reviewed by too few people and two of them are clearly ignorant of the subject and the literature in the field of civil rights. Read morePublished on April 16, 2013 by Robert J. Norrell