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Peace and Freedom: The Civil Rights and Antiwar Movements in the 1960s (Politics and Culture in Modern America) Hardcover – November, 2004


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Product Details

  • Series: Politics and Culture in Modern America
  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press (November 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812238397
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812238396
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,637,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

...a must read for anyone interested in the relationship between the civil rights and antiwar movements of the 60s. -- H-Net, H-South, June 1, 2006

...achieves a level of nuance previously unmatched by studies of the subject. -- Journal of African American History, Spring 2007

About the Author

Simon Hall teaches history at the University of Leeds.

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A reader on February 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
The civil rights and antiwar movements of the sixties are two of the most famous social and cultural phenomena of the post-war period. Many readers, like me, will have been waiting for years for a book that really explains what was going on during this turbulent time.

Anyone who has been following the academic world in the last few years will know that Simon Hall is one of history's real rising stars. People might question his credentials, given that actually Hall is an Englishman, from the middle-class West Midlands town of Cheltenham, but the man certainly knows his stuff. I only spotted one mistake in the whole book: in the very first sentence, Hall refers to Eric "the Octopus" Terrell, when any boxing fan worth his salt knows that the man's name was Ernie. Perhaps he was thinking of Eric the Eel, the failed Olympic swimmer.

Anyway, after that unfortunate beginning, Hall's book is a really good read. He brilliantly shows why the civil rights and antiwar movements rose and fell, and explains why they found it so difficult to work together. Some of the stuff here about the clowns at the extremes of both movements is absolutely hilarious, but Hall resists the temptation to poke fun at them, giving an account that is balanced, thoughtful, always riveting and scrupulously researched.

Above all, he shows how both movements were really a resurgence of a much older reform tradition, a point that is far too often neglected by scholars. (An exception is the new biography of Eugene McCarthy, which the senator himself attacked but which received some really terrific reviews. That's another book I can't wait to read. Funnily enough, the author of that book, too, is an Englishman. Are all the best historians these days from England?
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Chairman Mo on February 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
As he prepared for his fight with Muhammad Ali in early 1967, Ernie 'The Octopus' Terrell disrespected the world heavyweight champion by pointedly referring to him as Cassius Clay. Whether a result of a copyeditor's oversight, or a sign of the author's subtle sense of irony, it seems entirely fitting that Terrell should himself be misnamed in the opening lines of Peace and Freedom: an indication, perhaps, that though the moral arc of the universe is long, it bends toward justice.

In this important new book on the 1960s, British historian Simon Hall explores both the reaction of the civil rights movement to America's escalating military involvement in Vietnam and the often fraught relationship between black and white critics of that war. Thoroughly researched and engagingly written, it offers provocative new insights into the most controversial decade of the American Century. For those of a less scholarly disposition, it also contains some terrific photographs (my favorites are those of the 1967 March on the Pentagon).

And as for "Dick Nixon", no one does him better than the late, great, Hunter S. Thompson: "He was a swine of a man and a jabbering dupe of a president...his body should have been burned in a trash bin."
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amie's_Bar on February 26, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Surely Chairman Mo, of all people, should be able to appreciate how important this book is? And it is important, especially given the author's refusal to engage with devilish theorising and his determination to write the first and last word on the issue of the Peace movement and the civil rights movement.

I, for one, can forgive the Eric/Ernie error. We all make mistakes, don't we?
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