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Freedom's Children: Young Civil Rights Activists Tell Their Own Stories

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Overview

In this inspiring collection of true stories, thirty African-Americans who were children or teenagers in the 1950s and 1960s talk about what it was like for them to fight segregation in the South-to sit in an all-white restaurant and demand to be served, to refuse to give up a seat at the front of the bus, ...
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Freedom's Children: Young Civil Rights Activists Tell Their Own Stories

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Overview

In this inspiring collection of true stories, thirty African-Americans who were children or teenagers in the 1950s and 1960s talk about what it was like for them to fight segregation in the South-to sit in an all-white restaurant and demand to be served, to refuse to give up a seat at the front of the bus, to be among the first to integrate the public schools, and to face violence, arrest, and even death for the cause of freedom.

"Thrilling...Nothing short of wonderful."-The New York Times

Awards:

( A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
( A Booklist Editors' Choice

Southern blacks who were young and involved in the civil rights movement during the 1950s and 1960s describe their experiences.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The names of those whose voices are heard in these pages are not recorded in textbooks, yet their childhoods in Alabama, Mississippi or Arkansas were marked by acts of extraordinary courage that collectively altered the course of American history. They were among the participants, and in some cases the leaders, of numerous civil rights demonstrations in the 1960s, many of which had violent, tragic outcomes. These individuals, whom Levine doggedly tracked down, were some of the first black young people to attend formerly all-white schools; to participate in sit-ins at segregated lunch counters in stores; to become Freedom Riders, protesting illegal segregation on interstate buses; and to wage the arduous, bloody fight to secure voting rights for blacks. Chronicling all of these campaigns--as well as shocking incidents of senseless beatings, unjust jailings and murders--these first-person accounts are articulate and affecting. Representative are the words of Gladis Williams, repeatedly arrested for taking part in protests during her high school years in Montgomery: ``So far as having fear, we didn't even know what fear was. We just had our minds set on freedom, and that was it.'' Ages 11-up. Jan.
Children's Literature - Deborah Zink Roffino
Here is a collection of memories by the "footsoldiers" of the Civil Rights Movement: the children and the teenagers. These oral accounts were gathered by the author during countless interviews. In Freedom's Children, Levine exposes the simple courage of everyday people who, although they never gained fame, recognized the time to stand, and the time to sit solidly where you will. With a writer's skill and an activist's viewpoint, the author offers the stories in chronological order beginning with segregation and building with power and pain towards Selma. Watch for awards for this impressive assembly of heroic experiences told in a language all teenagers understand - their own.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780380721146
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/28/1994
  • Edition description: REISSUE
  • Pages: 224
  • Age range: 10 - 14 Years
  • Lexile: 760L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.17 (w) x 6.82 (h) x 0.52 (d)

Meet the Author

Ellen S. Levine is a web producer, writer, editor, and consultant in marketing and publicity.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 20 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(9)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(2)

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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    I loved this book!

    How would you feel if you got treated with disrespect because of your skin color? Well the children in the book were back in the 1940s to the 1960s. This non-fiction book tells about real children¿s lives when the civil rights movement was going on. Ellen Levine did a wonderful job telling these stories. This book has stories in it about Bloody Sunday, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the beginning of the Movement, The Selma to Montgomery march, Segregation and Integration in schools, Sit-ins, freedom rides, the Children¿s Crusade, the Little Rock Nine, and the Selma Movement. It also has stories about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I think someone who likes to hear about the Civil Rights Movement from a teenager or child¿s point of view would be interested in this book. The setting of this book is in the south, like Montgomery and Selma, Alabama. The weakest points of this book were when the author interviewed friends of Civil Rights workers and they told about the same things as the Civil Rights workers. I think the strongest points of this book were when Ellen Levine talked about the actions people took after Bloody Sunday. I¿ve never read a book like this before but I¿m glad I did.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A sixth grade student from mountain shadows but this is one of the most emotional books ever its awesome.

    Freedoms children is one of the most emotional,drama book ever.Its about all the colors of people it seems like everything happened in Misissippi.But its sad they used to pour ketchup and musturd on all the blacks.They had many bombings in all these churchs and it was by the ku klucks klan.The white people that hated colored people dressed up in all white and the only thing you could see is their eyes.Many people died from the KKK even a 3 year old could die.They had seperate classrooms,restraunts,bathrooms,and many more.Busses got blown up people got arrested for walking into a store .People stood up for their people and many did good but some died .Some knew they were gonna die and many didn't they knew they died for a good reason.Martin luther king was assissinated by James Earl Ray on April 4, 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee .Many gave their life to pass all these rights i reccomend this book if you want to learn about these bad times.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2007

    Freedoms Children is an AWESOME story

    I loved the book Freedoms Children. Anyone who is interest in the blacks rights during the time of the Civil war should read this book. You learn so much more and so many of these storys can relate to you. Just think about it it is amazing!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2006

    too many names,dates and stories

    this book is kind of good but it gets boring after a while!!There many information and it`s confusing!!This book is mainly about how hard was to the black people to overcome the segregation in South!!I wouldn`t recommend this book for people who loves to read interesting stories,it`s good book if you need to find some information!!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    This book was absolutely fantastic!!!

    Did you ever wonder how horrible life was during segregation? The author, Ellen Levine, expresses how tragic life was in the 1940¿s-1960 through the eyes of African Americans who were a part of the movement. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the Civil Rights. This is a nonfiction book about the struggle that people had to go through to gain rights. I can guarantee that you have never read a book that this before. I believe that it is uninteresting whenever the characters don¿t know what segregation really is. I think that the story is very strong whenever the marches went on and whenever they would go to Mass Meetings and spoke about freedom and that all African Americans deserve the same rights as anyone else. I believe that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Elizabeth Eckford. They were both very helpful in the Movent¿s marches and mass meetings. I would give this book two thumbs up!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    My Opinion

    Do you enjoy reading, well after you read the book Freedoms Children, by Ellen Levine, you will. This non fiction book takes place in different parts of the South. The book talks about the civil rights movement, and how children suffered from it. The message of the book is even though there are white people that hate black people, you should still fight back, and give black people their rights. There are a lot of main characters, but I think the main characters are Dr. Martin Luther king Jr., and Sheyan Webb. I think if you read this book you will enjoy it, I know I did.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    This book was kinda boring

    Book Review Don¿t you hate it when someone is made fun of or left out just because they look different? Well the Book Freedom¿s Children is all about black citizens fighting for their rights but in a non-violent way. Freedom¿s Children shows how horrible segregation was and the hard fight for freedom and equality. The author of this book aslo wrote Freedom Train wich is about Harriot Tubman and how she freed all of those African-American slaves. What the writer tries to get across is that segregation was terrible and the fight to end it was almost impossible but it was done. I would not recommend this book to many people. This book gets a little boring after a while. Pete Shuttlesworth was the most important character in this book. He really did a lot for the cival rights movement.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    Very intresting!

    Do you want to know what it was like for kids during the Civil Rights Movement? You can find out if you read Freedoms Children by Ellen Levine. This book is filled with biographical interviews of kids who lived in the south during the 1950¿s and 60¿s. Two of those people are Ernest green and Sheyann Webb. Ernest Green was a brave boy who was one of the Little Rock Nine. Sheyann Webb was an independent girl who protested with the adults during the Civil Rights Movement. This book teaches kids that you have to make sacrifices in order to gain something more. Also it has pictures and is in kids dialect so that it is easy to understand.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    Freedoms Children

    Do you want to know about children just like you? Freedom¿s Children is a non-fiction book by Ellen Levine. This book is about the 1950s to the 1960s. Some of the people in the book are Sheyann Webb and Fred Taylor. The settings for the book is the south during the 1950s and 1960s. In the book the author is trying to show how badly colored people are treated. I don¿t think this story has any weak points. Some of the strong points are when the story makes a big impact on how you think, like when Sheyann joins the march. I would recommend this book to my friends and to most kids because it¿s a good book about colored people and how they were mistreated.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    Not So Good!

    Are you curious about the civil rights movement? If so you might like this book. It is good for the informational aspect of reading, but if you are a reader that likes a good story, this book is simply not for you. It drags on about the same thing over and over. This book is powerless. It might be the fact that it is a non-fictional story, but all I know is one thing, I sure didn¿t like it. Freedom¿s Children focuses on the civil rights movement and how hard life was for blacks in the south during the 1950¿s and 60¿s. The people mentioned most often are Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Shuttlesworths, a family that was very involved in the civil rights movement. This book relates somewhat to the book ¿Watsons Go to Birmingham¿. In ¿Watsons Go to Birmingham¿ a family travels down to Birmingham and finds out how cruel whites are to blacks down south. If I were you, I would look for another book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    My Review

    Do you think segregation was bad? Well, you¿ll change your mind when you read freedom¿s Children by: Ellen Levine. This biography interview book tells how segregation was from the view of people who actually experienced it. This book is known for giving good points of views from a person¿s own eyes. Like when the author would interview some person the person would say words like ain¿t, that gave me a good idea how people would talk back then and the interviews would talk about the people¿s troubles. Freedom¿s Children is also a difficult book to read because it interviews people more instead of talking about the events that happened during the movement.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2006

    First-hand Civil Rights Experience

    If you would like to learn more about the civil rights movement,then this is a perfect book for you. Freedom¿s Children, a non-fiction story by Ellen Levine, tells you first-hand about what life was like in the south during the 1950s and `60s from the people who lived through it. This collection of stories from thirty civil rights activists is inspiring and also thrilling. Sheyann Webb and James Roberson are two of the most important people in this collection, even though they all helped make a huge difference. This shows just how bad it was for African Americans in the southern states during the `50s and `60s. This collection of stories was put together to educate readers about the civil rights movement and motivate people to try to be a part of something important. Although the book was great, there were some weak points when the author started writing about what each chapter was about, that might have made the author uninterested in the book. I would have to say the strongest points were when the author added a powerful story that would make you think, ¿Wow, I can¿t believe this actually happened.¿ I would recommend this book to someone who wanted to learn more about the civil rights movement, and maybe someone who was interested in the movement.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2003

    An Amazing Novel by an Amazing Woman

    Levine is a genius! In person, she is even more touching than her novel. A must read for any concerned human.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 1999

    An Excellent Book On The Stuggles Of The South

    Freedom's Children really touched me and opened my eyes to the plight of the black race in the south in the 50's and before. I felt rage and disgust in the poor dilluted souls who lowered themselves to their hatred and pride in the ability of others to overcome that hatred and take what is the most cherished of all rights: the right to be a human being.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted August 31, 2011

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    Posted February 22, 2010

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    Posted March 27, 2011

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    Posted January 5, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2011

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