A Personal Odyssey

Sowell, Thomas

Published by Free Press, 2000
ISBN 10: 0684864649 / ISBN 13: 9780684864648
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Synopsis: The Harvard-educated economist traces his journey from the mean streets of Harlem to the halls of power in government and industry, offering readers a compelling portrait of an American success story.

Review: Thomas Sowell is known for speaking--and writing--his mind, even when his opinions won't win him any popularity contests. In thoughtful, straightforward books like The Quest for Cosmic Justice and Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality? he questioned affirmative action and expressed frustration with government bureaucracy, elaborating on his ideas of personal freedom and responsibility in the process. In A Personal Odyssey, we're shown glimpses of the man behind the ideas, and while the narration is sometimes frustratingly distant, it's an enjoyable history of a fascinating man. Beginning with his early life in North Carolina, where his encounters with white people were so limited that he didn't really believe that "yellow" was a possible color for hair, Sowell details his childhood with humor and appreciation for the adults who raised him with love, attention, and high expectations. Throughout the experiences that follow, from the U.S. Marines to Howard and Harvard Universities to his fellowship at Stanford's Hoover Institute, Sowell's strong opinions make him stand out from the herd. His brother sums up this trait in describing Sowell's son: "Tommy, when I see a dozen kids, all doing the same thing, and in the midst of them is one kid doing something entirely different, I don't have to guess which one is our mother's grandson." You don't have to be familiar with Sowell's scholarly works to appreciate his life--this is a read for any freethinking iconoclast. --Jill Lightner

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Bibliographic Details

Title: A Personal Odyssey
Publisher: Free Press
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: First Edition

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