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SNCC: The New Abolitionists (Radical 60s)

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ISBN-13: 978-0896086791
ISBN-10: 0896086798
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“SNCC describes in fresh and moving terms the youthful freedom fighters of the South and of the radical `movement' which has contributed so much toward checking the country out of it moral lethargy.”–The Boston Herald --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: Radical 60s (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: South End Press (September 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0896086798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0896086791
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #624,679 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Howard Zinn (1922-2010) was a historian, playwright, and activist. He wrote the classic A People's History of the United States, "a brilliant and moving history of the American people from the point of view of those ... whose plight has been largely omitted from most histories" (Library Journal). The book, which has sold more than two million copies, has been featured on The Sopranos and Simpsons, and in the film Good Will Hunting. In 2009, History aired The People Speak, an acclaimed documentary co-directed by Zinn, based on A People's History and a companion volume, Voices of a People's History of the United States.

Zinn grew up in Brooklyn in a working-class, immigrant household. At 18 he became a shipyard worker and then flew bomber missions during World War II. These experiences helped shape his opposition to war and passion for history. After attending college under the GI Bill and earning a Ph.D. in history from Columbia, he taught at Spelman, where he became active in the civil rights movement. After being fired by Spelman for his support for student protesters, Zinn became a professor of Political Science at Boston University, were he taught until his retirement in 1988.

Zinn was the author of many books, including an autobiography, You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train, the play Marx in Soho, and Passionate Declarations. He received the Lannan Foundation Literary Award for Nonfiction and the Eugene V. Debs award for his writing and political activism.

Photographer Photo Credit Name: Robert Birnbaum.

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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Alan Mills VINE VOICE on January 29, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Following the out break of sit-ins accross the upper south, originated by and participated in largely by Black college students, the students founded the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, in an attempt to bring some order to these spontaneous direct actions.
In 1960, a group of thes students decided to bring democracy to Mississippi and other deep south states. Zinn was with them, and (being a historian, after all) wrote down what he saw. As Zinn admits, this is not a history. It is closer akin to contemporaneous journalism.
What Zinn does is dramatize just how far from democracy and the rule of law Mississippi was in the early 60's (at least for Black people--but it is hard to believe that this form of autocratic government didn't spill over into the "White" government as well.
The Federal Constitution did not apply. State law did not apply. A student standing on the steps of the federal building (of all places) is arrested, beaten to unconsciousness, and sent to hard labor at the notorious Parchman Farm. All for simply watching a line of black citizens attempt to register to vote. All this while the FBI stands by, and does nothing but take notes.
Looking back from the perspective of 40 years on, we tend to glamorize the civil rights movement--the Supreme Court decided Brown, Rosa Parks refused to sit in the back of the bus, King gave a speech about his dream, and then Congress solved the problem by passing the Civil Rights Law.
What Zinn makes clear is that while all of this was happening on the national level, the real battle was taking place person by person in the deep south. The heroes were not limited to Dr.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful By rodog63jr on October 9, 2002
Format: Paperback
The Officers and Members Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) were the foot soldiers of the Civil Rights Movement. They went into the dangerous areas of the South and attempted to register voters and challenge local segregation ordinances. Howard Zinn documents this in this social history of SNCC. He also gives information on Fannie Lou Hamer, John Lewis and other prominent SNCC leaders.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Howard did us proud. Anyone who wants to better understand the young people who fought in the southern struggle, should read this book.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on December 19, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Howard Zinn was there in the trenches.I was a bit too young for the battle front but I had 2 years of life changing experiences on my college campus with a couple of SNCC organizers. If you want to connect the dots looking backward (Steve Job's words) regarding why many people and institutions in America continue to struggle with race and class issues, grab a large mug of coffee, tea, or whatever you drink while reading and read this book. Many stars...it is excellent.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By JTR on May 8, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The real eye-opener in this book was how progressive activist Zinn took down the Kennedy Bros. for doing practically nothing to keep the freedom fighters from getting the crap kicked out of them by police and sheriff's department thugs. Maybe the Kennedys would even be alive today had they chosen the Civil Rights fight instead of taking on the mob and Castro, much more high profile and attention-grabbing tasks. The man who wrote "Profiles in Courage" is here revealed as having no courage at all when it came to standing up for equal rights under the law or to enforcing civil rights laws already on the books. Those who have claimed all along that Kennedy was not a good president because he did little or nothing were right. One thing Zinn shows Kennedy did do was appoint openly racist judges; his brother Bob even PROSECUTED demonstrators for expressing their displeasure over a federal rights trial outcome by picketing jurors' homes, and then when the case came to trial his attorneys used their pre-emptive dismissals of potential jurors to remove all blacks! The Kennedys may not have been racists in their hearts and in their thoughts, but they definitely were such in their actions, or non-action. Talk about the Emperor having no clothes!
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