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Pieces From the Past: Voices of Heroic Women in Civil Rights Paperback – November 1, 2011
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Joan Sadoff, in her book Pieces from the Past: Voices of Heroic Women in Civil Rights, gives voice to courageous black and white women whose determination, selflessness and sacrifices were instrumental in the success of the civil rights movement in the United States in the 1960s. These insightful experiences are a testament to the power of women during this significant time in our history. As a result of their achievements, women today will be inspired and motivated in continuing efforts to bring about needed social change. --Ione D. Vargus, Ph.D., Former Dean, School of Social Work, Temple University
From the Inside Flap
Joan Sadoff, in her book Pieces from the Past: Voices of Heroic Women in Civil Rights, gives voice to courageous black and white women whose determination, selflessness and sacrifices were instrumental in the success of the civil rights movement in the United States in the 1960s. These insightful experiences are a testament to the power of women during this significant time in our history. As a result of their achievements, women today will be inspired and motivated in continuing efforts to bring about needed social change. Ione D. Vargus, Ph.D., Former Dean, School of Social Work, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Top customer reviews
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A good read. These women shine through the pages, becoming very real and connected to the reader. For me it not only
increased my knowledge of that period in our country's history, but expanded my sense of empathy. A life changing experience,
almost as though I had been there meeting and talking to the women who told theirs or others' stories.
I highly recommend this book.
The author, with the help of Robert L. Sadoff and Linda Needleman, her coeditors, visited Mississippi to speak to the courageous women and/or those who knew them . . . the stories she then incorporated into this book helped teach me about a time and place in our country that I had heard about, but really knew little about.
Some of them were actually scary; for example:
* Aunt Fannie Lou was beaten mercilessly. No formal charges were made against her or the others. But what charge could they make that would merit such a beating? Aunt Fannie Lou knew it was the result of her attempting to vote. She later described the impact the beating on her. "they beat me until I was hard, 'til I couldn't bend my fingers or get up when they told me to. When they finally told me to go to my cell, I couldn't get up. I couldn't bend my knees. Every day of my life I pay with the misery of that beating. That's how I got this blood clot in my eye. The sight's nearly gone now, and my kidney was injured from the blows they gave me on the back."
Others touched me, such as this one:
* Ma was a kindhearted, soft spoken person, one who encouraged her children to be the best that could be. She never kicked you when you were down. On the contrary, Mama's best qualities came out when you were "down." She was there for you and not once do I remember her telling me, "I told you so," even though she was always "telling us so." You could say she "preached" to us all the time. That was her method of training and discipline. It was just too hard for Ma to try to whip us. She would call all the children to hold the one down she was trying to whip. But the one on top would get all the licks, so Ma tried another tactic and that was the preach/index-finger method. She had an index finger that she would point at you "while preaching" to you, and you just wanted her to go on and give you a good beating. My friend's parents would call them names and curse them out. I wanted Mama to do the same to me, but instead, I got the finger which was much worse, in my opinion.
And then there was this reminder about how things actually were in the Deep South:
Mrs. Mary Vandevender was the circuit clerk for the county, and she was the one who'd give the voter registration test to us. I knew about the test. I'd have to fill out a long application, read a section of the state constitution and "interpret" it in writing. Whether you passed or not was left entirely up to the person giving the test. That was the law in Mississippi and that's the way black people had been kept from voting for years, if they ever got that far along in the process.
After reading this excellent book, I now find myself wanting to view the two documentaries that the Sadoffs have produced on this same subject: PHILADELPHIA: MISSISSIPPI: UNTOLD STORIES and STANDING ON MY SISTER'S SHOULDERS.
Be it blacks and whites, Israelis and Palestinians, gays and straights....... (you get the picture...)
Loved the book, loved the stories, the heart, the quotes and expressions.
Chilling! So glad you allowed their voices and stories to be heard.
Reinforced why I enjoy stories so much and loved the pictures --- peoples' portraits and stories.
I was in awe of how so many in the stories were able to maintain their dignity and persevere in the most dire of circumstances.
A must read for anyone wanting inspiration ----- wanting empowerment ---- to know that their story and their voice can make a difference one person or one group at a time toward a more fair and just society.