Elizabeth and Hazel by David Margolick
Two Women of Little Rock

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 10 Critic Reviews

unrated

Synopsis

The names Elizabeth Eckford and Hazel Bryan Massery may not be well known, but the image of them from September 1957 surely is: a black high school girl, dressed in white, walking stoically in front of Little Rock Central High School, and a white girl standing directly behind her, face twisted in hate, screaming racial epithets. This famous photograph captures the full anguish of desegregation—in Little Rock and throughout the South—and an epic moment in the civil rights movement.

In this gripping book, David Margolick tells the remarkable story of two separate lives unexpectedly braided together. He explores how the haunting picture of Elizabeth and Hazel came to be taken, its significance in the wider world, and why, for the next half-century, neither woman has ever escaped from its long shadow. He recounts Elizabeth’s struggle to overcome the trauma of her hate-filled school experience, and Hazel’s long efforts to atone for a fateful, horrible mistake. The book follows the painful journey of the two as they progress from apology to forgiveness to reconciliation and, amazingly, to friendship. This friendship foundered, then collapsed—perhaps inevitably—over the same fissures and misunderstandings that continue to permeate American race relations more than half a century after the unforgettable photograph at Little Rock. And yet, as Margolick explains, a bond between Elizabeth and Hazel, silent but complex, endures.

 

About David Margolick

See more books from this Author
David Margolick is the author of five books, including Strange Fruit: The Biography of a Song (Harper Perennial, 2001), Beyond Glory: Joe Louis vs. Max Schmeling and a World on the Brink (Vintage, 2006), and Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock (Yale University Press, 2011). He is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and a Loomis School alum.
 
Published October 4, 2011 by Yale University Press. 321 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Elizabeth and Hazel

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Though “Little Rock in the Eisenhower era was a racial checkerboard,” writes the author, its looming high school still became the first Southern institution to become desegregated, which sent Eckford, along with eight other school board–selected black student “trailblazers” (the “Little Rock Nine...

Jul 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

The New York Times

See more reviews from this publication

“The more Elizabeth got back on her feet, the more judgmental she became.” Ever the exacting history student and never one to read from a facile script, Elizabeth could not offer the unreserved forgiveness that a happy ending required.

Oct 07 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

The Wall Street Journal

See more reviews from this publication

Elizabeth's white classmates at Central High School resented the way publicity about Hazel resurrected the ugly long-ago episode at the school.

Oct 05 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Los Angeles Times

See more reviews from this publication

"Elizabeth and Hazel": A review of the book "Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock" in today's Arts & Books section says that the women at the center of the book met in 1987 on the 30th anniversary of the desegregation of Little Rock Central High School.

Oct 23 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Christian Science Monitor

Captured by the camera’s eye, two Arkansas women have never been able to escape a historic photo – or each other.

Oct 03 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Dallas News

The turbulent integration of Central High School in Little Rock, Ark., in 1957 stands as a defining moment in civil rights history.

Oct 07 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Washington Independent Review of Books

They say a picture tells a thousand words, but in Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock, it is the words that tell the painful half-century-old story of two girls captured on film at a moment in time.

Oct 31 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Teen Reads

For Hazel, who had to leave Central High and whose life became a testament to a rebuilding of character, it was as important a signpost as to Elizabeth, whose life after Central High gradually crumbled into depression and destitution.

Oct 13 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Seattle PI

Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock by David Margolick is a nonfiction book about two ladies who were made famous by the press.

Oct 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Bookmarks Magazine

Randy Dotinga Cleveland Plain Dealer 4 of 5 Stars "In his engrossing new book Elizabeth and Hazel, David Margolick expands the [photo's] frame to consider the difficult lives of its two central figures, their attempt at reconciliation and the fact that they don't speak now.

Oct 17 2011 | Read Full Review of Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Wome...

Reader Rating for Elizabeth and Hazel
89%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 39 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


Rate this book!

Add Review