I See the Promised Land: A Life of Martin Luther King, Jr.

I See the Promised Land: A Life of Martin Luther King, Jr.

by Arthur Flowers, Manu Chitrakar
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

I See the Promised Land traverses the milestones of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s short life, ministry, and journey. This graphic narrative brings together two diverse yet dramatic traditions of storytelling. Renowned African American writer and griot Arthur Flowers tells a tale—replete with destiny and the human condition to Manu Chitrakar's

Overview

I See the Promised Land traverses the milestones of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s short life, ministry, and journey. This graphic narrative brings together two diverse yet dramatic traditions of storytelling. Renowned African American writer and griot Arthur Flowers tells a tale—replete with destiny and the human condition to Manu Chitrakar's extraordinarily vivid and eloquent art of the Patua folk style of West Bengal, India.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Traditional Bengali scroll art and oral storytelling come together in this retelling of the life of Martin Luther King Jr., though the fusion of the two media is rarely harmonious. English professor and performance poet Flowers provides the text, which chronicles not only King's life but also centuries of racial abuses, beginning with the slave trade. Accompanying the text are Chitrakar's vibrant illustrations, full of lush primary colors and bold brush strokes; their power is diluted by the page layout, particularly the distracting blocks of texts superimposed over the images. Judged separately, the components are strong, and the idea to present King's life as a cross-cultural mixture of art and words is effective. Flowers shows King not only as a man committed to fighting injustice but also as one who struggled to find his place in the rapidly changing civil rights climate, as nonviolent protests were becoming a thing of the past. There is little attempt to integrate the text, let alone the font, with the imagery, however, leaving the reader with an overall impression, despite the novel approach, of disjointed parts soldered together to make a rickety whole. Ages 9–12. (Dec.)
Library Journal
Self-dubbed a "performance poet" fusing the African oral tradition of the griot with Western print culture, Flowers (Another Good Loving Blues; Mojo Rising) weaves Martin Luther King Jr.'s story into the vivid canvas of Chitrakar's distinctive art. For his part, the West Bengal scroll artist has produced dramatic illustrative visuals bringing to life Flowers's spare, lyrical prose through a more picture-story approach than traditional comics. (See Eric Nash's 2009 Manga Kamishibai for the Japanese approach to picture-story theater.) Endnotes provide brief background on the historical context of King's life. VERDICT A myth-making take on King's life that has both emotional and intellectual impact, the Flowers/Chitrakar collaboration supplies fresh color and richness to the oft-told history of this game-changer. The deceptive yet appealing simplicity of the bright, rounded figures turns King's myth again for a new season. Designed for adults but fine for teens and up; recommended for all libraries. Be sure to display this along with Ho Che Anderson's King: A Comics Biography of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Fantagraphics, 2005) for Black History Month.—M.C.
From the Publisher
“Both evocative and factually rich . . . Older teens, in addition to adults, will find this to be a standout both as a distinctive graphic narrative that combines two world storytelling traditions and as an examination of King’s life and its enduring legacy across the globe.” — Booklist Starred Review

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9789380340043
Publisher:
Tara Books
Publication date:
12/01/2010
Pages:
142
Product dimensions:
6.70(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Arthur Flowers: Arthur Flowers is an African-American writer and griot, bard and blues singer. He is the co-founder of the New Renaissance Writer's Guild. A native of Memphis, TN, he currently teaches in Syracuse University in New York state.

Manu Chitrakar: Manu Chitrakar is a Patua artist from West Bengal, India.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >