Ella Baker: Freedom Bound

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Praise for ELLA BAKER

"Splendid biography . . . a valuable contribution to the growing body of literature on the critical roles of women in civil rights."—Joyce A. Ladner, The Washington Post Book World

"The definitive biography of Ella Baker, a force behind the civil rights movement and almost every social justice movement of this century."—Gloria Steinem

"This book will be received with plaudits for its empathy, insightfulness, and gendered narration of an astonishingly neglected life that was pivotal in the ...

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Overview

Praise for ELLA BAKER

"Splendid biography . . . a valuable contribution to the growing body of literature on the critical roles of women in civil rights."—Joyce A. Ladner, The Washington Post Book World

"The definitive biography of Ella Baker, a force behind the civil rights movement and almost every social justice movement of this century."—Gloria Steinem

"This book will be received with plaudits for its empathy, insightfulness, and gendered narration of an astonishingly neglected life that was pivotal in the pursuit of American justice and humanity."—David Levering Lewis Pulitzer Prize-winning author of W. E. B. Du Bois

"Pathbreaking. By illuminating the little-known story of how profoundly Ella Baker influenced the most radical activists of the era, Grant's graceful portrayal reveals Miss Baker's transformative impact on recent history."—Kathleen Cleaver

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Ella Baker, one woman worth reading about. The cover photo alone is worth the price of the book. Ella Baker clutches her ballpoint pen, eyeglass case and big purse. She's wearing a blue wool coat, earbobs and Sunday school hat. It's a portrait of a lifelong activist."—The Atlanta Journal Constitution

"Splendid biography . . . A valuable contribution to the growing body of literature on the critical roles of women in civil rights."—The Washington Post Book World

"A warm, tender, and incisive portrait of an unheralded mover in this century's struggle for the rights of African Americans."—Marian Wright Edelman, President, Children's Defense Fund

"The definitive biography of Ella Baker, a force behind the civil rights movement and almost every social justice movement of this century."—Gloria Steinem

"Will be received with plaudits for its empathy, insightfulness, and gendered narration of an astonishingly neglected life that was pivotal in the pursuit of American justice and humanity."—David Levering Lewis, Pulitzer prize-winning author of W.E.B. DuBois

Atlanta Journal Constitution
Ella Baker, one woman worth reading about. The cover photo alone is worth the price of the book. Ella Baker clutches her ballpoint pen, eyeglass case and big purse. She's wearing a blue wool coat, earbobs and Sunday school hat. It's a portrait of a lifelong activist.
Washington Post Book World
Splendid biography . . . A valuable contribution to the growing body of literature on the critical roles of women in civil rights.
Marian Wright Edelman
A warm, tender, and incisive portrait of an unheralded mover in this century's struggle for the rights of African Americans.
Gloria Steinem
The definitive biography of Ella Baker, a force behind the civil rights movement and almost every social justice movement of this century.
David Levering Lewis
Will be received with plaudits for its empathy, insightfulness, and gendered narration of an astonishingly neglected life that was pivotal in the pursuit of American justice and humanity.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This reverential, earnest biography of civil rights pioneer Ella Baker (1903-1986) should give her the wider recognition she deserves. Born in Virginia, raised in North Carolina, a community activist and New York newspaper reporter during the Harlem Renaissance, Baker in 1947 helped organize a series of interracial bus trips to test segregation laws in the South, a remarkable precursor of the bloody Freedom Rides of 1961. She was instrumental in establishing two key organizations: the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which grew out of the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. A mentor to civil rights workers, she supported SNCC's metamorphosis in the mid-1960s into an all-black, militant black power group and, as Grant notes, turned a blind eye to the prevalence of weapons among its zealous recruits. Grant, producer of Fundi, a PBS television documentary about Baker, chronicles her subject's battles for school desegregation; consumer, tenants' and labor causes; her faith in grassroots democracy; and the empowerment of ordinary people. Photos. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Although virtually unknown outside the Civil Rights community, in the 1960s Ella Baker was a feisty, rebellious, and dignified organizer who worked behind the scenes, struggling to make radical changes within the NAACP and other organizations like the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). She confronted racism during her many travels and male chauvinism from black Southern ministers reluctant to follow the lead of a woman. In this work, which is a bit lackluster, Grant (Black Protest, LJ 6/1/68) does a good job of capturing Baker's spirit, but the book reads more like a history of the Civil Rights Movement and Baker's major role in it, than a portrait of her personal life. We also get a revealing look at some of the key players, e.g., Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Stokely Carmichael, and Rosa Parks. Recommended for students of history and for patrons with a limited knowledge of those radical years.Ann Burns, "Library Journal"
Journal Constitution Atlanta
Ella Baker, one woman worth reading about. The cover photo alone is worth the price of the book. Ella Baker clutches her ballpoint pen, eyeglass case and big purse. She's wearing a blue wool coat, earbobs and Sunday school hat. It's a portrait of a lifelong activist.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471327172
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/18/1999
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.61 (d)

Meet the Author

JOANNE GRANT began her career in civil rights as an assistant to NAACP founder W. E. B. Du Bois. While working as a reporter for the National Guardian in the 1960s, she joined the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee and became a close associate of Ella Baker. She produced and directed Fundi: The Story of Ella Baker, an award-winning documentary film nationally telecast on PBS. Ms. Grant is the author of Black Protest, a classic documentary history, and Confrontation on Campus. She lives in New York City.

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Table of Contents

Roots of Rebellion.

Reveling in New Ideas.

Putting People in Motion: The NAACP Years.

The Travel Was Bum.

The Northern Challenge.

Confronting "De Lawd."

Political Mama.

On the Way to Freedom Land.

Grassroots Politics.

In Her Image.

Black Power's Gon' Get Your Mama!

Epilogue.

"The Black Woman in the Civil Rights Struggle."

Awards Granted to Ella Baker.

Notes.

Bibliography.

Index.

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