Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Soledad Brother: The Prison Letters of George Jackson Paperback – September 1, 1994
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Pre-order today
Frequently bought together
From Library Journal
Jackson gained notoriety shortly before his death in 1970 when his younger brother unsuccessfully tried to free him at gunpoint when Jackson and two others were on trial for killing a guard. Written between 1964 and 1970 while serving time in Soledad Prison for robbery, the letters reveal the brutality and racism faced by prisoners and call for unity among African Americans. This edition contains a new foreword by Jackson's nephew Jonathan. Soledad Brother remains "recommended for most libraries" (LJ 12/15/70) and is a solid title for Black History Month in February.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The collection of letters begin in 1967 and conclude in 1970 (letters prior to 1967 were destroyed for some unexplained reason). Jackson wrote his letters without any intention of publishing them. The early letters are primarily to his parents and are of minor interest. These letters assured his family that he was doing well, and often requested books, or other items such as a typewriter. The letters become somewhat repetitive, but they reveal a man sensitive to how his incarceration impacted his family.
Missing from this volume, for the most part, are Jackson’s politically-oriented letters; these letters are collected in another book entitled Blood in My Eye. Underlying all of his letters is a political sensibility reflecting black nationalism and Maoist thought. The political aspect of his writings become more overt in the last hundred pages of the book when letters to his lawyer and to other activists such as Angela Davis are presented. These pages are the most interesting ones in the book.
Jackson wrote in a simple, unadorned style that makes his letters engaging and easy to read. He resolved to make his imprisonment a period of self-education. He read voraciously, determined to increase his vocabulary. He stated: "I met Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Engels, and Mao when I entered prison and they redeemed me." The influence of these authors becomes increasingly apparent and his working vocabulary shows consistent improvement.
Although he became a Black Panther while in prison, no mention of that fact appears in these letters; there is only a single reference to a recorded letter from Huey P. Newton brought to him by one of his visitors. In another letter he praises the efforts of the Black Panthers. Nothing more. Apparently all of these letters were relegated to Blood in My Eye. Both books became best-sellers, but Jackson did not survive to enjoy this success.
Very highly recommended. Five stars for its insight into the mind of a revolutionary. The vigor of the final hundred pages make up for the banality of the preceding two hundred pages.
He rips apart the falsehoods that create conflicts of Race and class. Then he relates the purposes for such divisions. He gives graphic insights concerning the "Civil Rights" struggles that marked the tumultuous, game changing, decade of the Sixties. Apparently, his warnings were not heeded and his letters could have been written today.
"Soledad Brother" is a must read not just for Black people, but for all people who are lovers of truth, justice and freedom!
However this book did a very poor job of addressing that. At no point did I feel sorry for this individual. Book asserts that he was locked up life for stealing $70 from a gas station. The reality is that this person appeared angry, aggressive, with little will power or self control. He committee dozens of crimes throughout this book. Even tying up and kidnapping a cell mate who was supposed to get out the next day, so that he could take his place. At no point in this book did Jackson express that he had learned any lessons about us actions. At no point did this individual take accountability for his actions.
Overall it is a story that does not actually support the reform that is so needed.