Top positive review
9 people found this helpful
on December 1, 2003
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz is from Oklahoma--a story told beautifully in her earlier volume, RED DIRT: GROWING UP OKIE. But her views, both in the 1960s and now, don't fit the Okie image. Yet, paradoxically, she would be the first to acknowledge that her Oklahoma background--poor, part Native American, a socialist grandfather--helped in some ways to shape her radicalism. (To be accurate, her radicalism probably resulted in part from reacting AGAINST her Oklahoma background.)
Dunbar-Ortiz has a remarkable ability to place the story of her life in context with "historical events" going on at the time--in this volume, the women's movement, the anti-Vietnam War movement, the "radical underground," etc. I recommended this book to my daughter, herself something of an activist (anti-nuclear power). She read it, loved it, and said one thing that was obvious was that Dunbar-Ortiz had kept a journal, thus enabling her to tell her story in rich detail.
She also has a remarkable ability to grab you and shake you and make you think, to make you reconsider stuff you thought you knew. I've been an Okie for 40 years, wear the label proudly, was an activist to some extent in all four major movements of the 60s (civil rights, anti-Vietnam War, environmental, women's). But I was by no means as radical, AM by no means as radical, as Dunbar-Ortiz. Which is part of why this was such a good book for me to read. You should read it too, whatever your political orientation!