I May Not Get There with You: The True Martin Luther King, Jr

Michael Eric Dyson

Published by Free Press, 2001
ISBN 10: 068483037X / ISBN 13: 9780684830377
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Synopsis: A private citizen who transformed the world around him, Martin Luther King, Jr., was arguably the greatest American who ever lived. Now, after more than thirty years, few people understand how truly radical he was. In this groundbreaking examination of the man and his legacy, provocative author, lecturer, and professor Michael Eric Dyson restores King's true vitality and complexity and challenges us to embrace the very contradictions that make King relevant in today's world.

Review: Provocative preacher-teacher Michael Eric Dyson, known for his hip-hop-style delivery and encyclopedic intellectual powers, heroically tries to update and examine the true legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. for a glib Generation-X world. Calling I May Not Get There with You a work of "biocriticism," Dyson peels away the superficial image of King the man to reveal a complex human being whose work was far from finished or totally understood. "In the last thirty years we have trapped King in romantic images or frozen his legacy in worship," he writes. "I seek to rescue King from his admirers and deliver him from his foes." To that end, Dyson takes aim at neoconservatives like Shelby Steele, who spin King's multiracial dreams into a right-wing call to end affirmative action, and goes after black militants who thought King was "soft" and overlooked the power of his "black radical Christianity." He also criticizes the government's co-opting of King's philosophy in a holiday, as well as what he calls the King family's well-meaning, but destructive, attempts to protect King's legacy. Dyson forces us to accept King for all of his faults--including plagiarism and womanizing--but more importantly allows us to see a real human being who rose to the height of humanity. --Eugene Holley, Jr.

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Title: I May Not Get There with You: The True ...
Publisher: Free Press
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Used: Good

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