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Terry A. Green RSS Feed (Glencoe, IL United States)

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Making Whiteness: The Culture of Segregation in the South, 1890-1940
Making Whiteness: The Culture of Segregation in the South, 1890-1940
by Grace Elizabeth Hale
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.83
93 used & new from $3.54

20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Segregation Artfully Explained, June 3, 2003
Lately, I find myself rereading books that challenge my understanding (not to mention my preconceived notions) of race history, but none more than Grace Elizabeth Hale's "Making Whiteness." This gem of a book ultimately defines the construction of race in the early 20th Century South and is written in a style reminiscent of Du Bois and Langston Hughes. It is an intelligent and informative examination of "class exploitation, disempowerment and racial privilege" that dares to reimagine the concept of racial integration. To quote from the book: "We need to remember that difference is created within, not before, our communities; that difference is created within, and not before, our histories; that difference is created within, and not before, ourselves." Over the past few months, I have amassed several books on race, segregation, Reconstruction, lynchings, Jim Crow, etc., and I consider "Making Whiteness" a cornerstone in my library.


The Enormous Room (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin)
The Enormous Room (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin)
by E. E. Cummings
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.00
100 used & new from $0.01

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Enormous Achievement, March 18, 2003
Written by America's most inventive poet, "The Enormous Room" is a book of prose set in a French detention camp during World War One. It is a coming-of-age story in which events happen, not always to the narrator (E.E. Cummings), but to the inhabitants of a place that serves as a microcosm for all the folly and brutality of war itself. As a war narrative it is unique -- unlike Hemingway's "Farewell to Arms" or Remarque's "All Quiet on the Western Front," the central story doesn't take place on the front lines. The plot of the book is basically non-linear, with the exception of the first three or four chapters, and several passages are written in French (thankfully a glossary of foreign terms is printed at the back of the book). I would describe Cummings' story as a stream-of-consciousness dialogue with himself, written in the language of a talented budding poet. Most memorable are the wonderful characters Cummings encountered during his short stay at La Ferte Mace, the name of the camp in which he was interned. They are objects of torn humanity and how terrible it must have been for him to leave them, knowing that upon his release many would languish in prison for the rest of their lives. "The Enormous Room" is a unique historical fiction. It is not an easy read, but it is one of those books that is even more difficult to put down. I have never read another book quite like it. [P.S.: There are two editions of the book, one published by Boni & Liveright and the other by Penquin Classics. The Liveright edition is the better one (and naturally harder to locate online or in book stores), and includes samples of drawings that Cummings made during his confinement.]


Lincoln : Speeches and Writings : 1859-1865 (Library of America)
Lincoln : Speeches and Writings : 1859-1865 (Library of America)
by Abraham Lincoln
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.02
181 used & new from $1.75

22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lincoln in His Own Words, March 12, 2003
I purchased this collection of speeches and letters knowing little about America's most beloved president other than what I had learned in my high school history classes. My first impression was "Boy, where have all the good presidents gone?" Aside from the famous speeches we're all familiar with, Lincoln was a prolific man of letters and an amazing presenter of ideas ahead of their time. Our sixteenth president wasn't perfect, but neither was our nation. During perhaps the most crucial period in U.S. history, thank God there was Abraham Lincoln. I grew up as a Democrat, but if Lincoln were running for the presidency today, he would be the first Republican to get my vote. This Library of America edition of Lincoln's speeches and writings is a beautifully bound volume that I will cherish for years to come.


Ask the Dust
Ask the Dust
by John Fante
Edition: Paperback
64 used & new from $1.07

127 of 132 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A True American Classic, March 3, 2003
This review is from: Ask the Dust (Paperback)
Twelve years ago I read an article in the Los Angeles Times in which America's most successful fiction writers were asked to name their top-ten favorite works of 20th Century American fiction. John Fante's "Ask the Dust" was the only title to appear on every author's top-ten list in that article. Since then, I've read "Ask the Dust" twice, as well as every other book by Mr. Fante. Ironically, "Ask the Dust" was published six years before J.D. Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye" and the similarities between Holden Caulfield and Arturo Bandini are uncanny. The difference is that Arturo is even more impulsive than Holden, if that's possible, and wholly American. You'll want to console Arturo and slap him silly at the same time! Unfortunately, John Fante didn't live to see the latest revival of his work, but Black Sparrow Press has made him a literary star. You will laugh outloud and embrace this book! I promise.
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Inferno
Inferno
by Anthony M. Esolen
Edition: Hardcover
17 used & new from $44.51

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Presented, March 3, 2003
This review is from: Inferno (Hardcover)
I'm no expert on English translations of classic works of literature, but for pure enjoyment Anthony Esolen's translation of Dante's "Inferno" works for me. From the first line of the first canto I was hooked and Dante's journey became my own. The book is surprisingly easy to read and beautifully illustrated by none other than Gustave Dore. Kudos to The Modern Library for this lovely clothcover edition!


Trouble in Mind
Trouble in Mind
by Leon F. Litwack
Edition: Paperback
Price: $15.49
77 used & new from $3.92

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Authoritative and Informative, March 3, 2003
This review is from: Trouble in Mind (Paperback)
In the wake of several books that have been published in recent years on the history of lynchings and Jim Crow, "Trouble in Mind" is by far the most thoroughly researched and most accessible. Leon F. Litwack explains Jim Crow in a personal and thought-provoking way, and manages to do so without giving us a dry history lesson. I've yet to read his Pulitzer Prize-winning "Been in the Storm So Long," but it is next on my list. If you're looking for a well-written book on a difficult and often misunderstood subject, I highly recommend Professor Litwack's "Trouble in Mind."


Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas (50th Anniversary Edition)
Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas (50th Anniversary Edition)
by Mari Sandoz
Edition: Paperback
139 used & new from $0.01

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Flawless Biography of a Unique American, February 23, 2003
What can you say about a shy, slender, half-blind woman, about five feet in height, who slept on the open prairie, lived with Indians on South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation, interviewd the likes of Black Elk, He Dog, Short Bull, Red Feather and others who personally knew Crazy Horse, who had already struggled for years as a writer before penning the ultimate biography of America's first authentic hero? From page one of "Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas" there is a sense that something spectacular is being recorded for posterity, never again to be witnessed by a living being. We are fortunate that Mari Sandoz lived during a time when the legend of Crazy Horse was still able to be told by those who knew and lived with him, but even more fortunate is that this amazing biography was written by an artist of the highest order. The story of the great Lakota warrior who refused to let his heritage be destroyed by the white man, will make you weep and wish you could have ridden with him on that open prairie.


Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas (50th Anniversary Edition)
Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas (50th Anniversary Edition)
by Mari Sandoz
Edition: Paperback
139 used & new from $0.01

46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Flawless Biography of a Unique American, February 23, 2003
What can you say about a shy, slender, half-blind woman, about five feet in height, who slept on the open prairie, lived with Indians on South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation, interviewed the likes of Black Elk, He Dog, Short Bull, Red Feather and others who personally knew Crazy Horse, who had already struggled for years as a writer before penning the ultimate biography of America's first authentic hero? From page one of "Crazy Horse: The Strange Man of the Oglalas" there is a sense that something spectacular is being recorded for posterity, never again to be witnessed by a living being. We are fortunate that Mari Sandoz lived during a time when the legend of Crazy Horse was still able to be told by those who knew and lived with him, but even more fortunate is that this amazing biography was written by an artist of the highest order. The story of the great Lakota warrior who refused to let his heritage be destroyed by the white man, will make you weep and wish you could have ridden with him on that open prairie.


Scottsboro (Galaxy Books)
Scottsboro (Galaxy Books)
by Dan T. Carter
Edition: Paperback
12 used & new from $0.22

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bancroft Prize Winner Delivers!, February 22, 2003
Does "Scottsboro: A Tragedy of the American South" need any more 5-star reviews to convince readers that it may just be the best historical account of an American tragedy ever written? More than seventy years have passed since nine blacks were wrongfully accused of raping two white women on board an Alabama freight train and the event still rings in the ears as if it happened yesterday. Professor Dan T. Carter has remained the preeminent expert on the Scottsboro case for more than thirty years and his extensive research is evident in this book. Never dry or dull, Professor Carter guides the reader through a harrowing story that must be read to be believed. If you're not familiar with the Scottsboro case and its important role in American and more essentially pre-Civil Rights history, this should be the first book on your list. I also recommend James Goodman's superbly written "Stories of Scottsboro" and Quentin Reynolds' "Courtroom," the biography of Scottsboro defense attorney Samuel S. Leibowitz.


A Death in Texas: A Story of Race, Murder and a Small Town's Struggle for Redemption
A Death in Texas: A Story of Race, Murder and a Small Town's Struggle for Redemption
by Dina Temple-Raston
Edition: Hardcover
88 used & new from $0.01

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Is Not As It Appears, February 22, 2003
Naively, I expected "A Death in Texas" to be an indictment of a small Texas town that was thrust into the national spotlight as the unfortunate host of a hideous hate crime. Just the opposite, the book is about an event that changed the lives of everyone in Jasper, Texas, not only forcing a community to take a long hard look at itself, but pointing out that in trying times, unlikely heroes emerge. As the media and interest groups descended on Jasper in the summer of 1998, either bent on labeling the town as "racist" or using the tragic murder of James Byrd to hoist their own political agendas, the local sheriff and townspeople worked together to solve the crime, punish the guilty, and ultimately heal each other in the process. As expected, it will take years for Jasper to overcome this terrible tragedy, but one gets the hopeful feeling that Jasperites will somehow find a way to do it. Dina Temple-Raston has not only written a page-turner, but an important expose' on a town in crisis.


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