Freedom Summer by Bruce Watson
The Savage Season That Made Mississippi Burn and Made America a Democracy

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Synopsis

A riveting account of one of the most remarkable episodes in American history.

In his critically acclaimed history Freedom Summer, award- winning author Bruce Watson presents powerful testimony about a crucial episode in the American civil rights movement. During the sweltering summer of 1964, more than seven hundred American college students descended upon segregated, reactionary Mississippi to register black voters and educate black children. On the night of their arrival, the worst fears of a race-torn nation were realized when three young men disappeared, thought to have been murdered by the Ku Klux Klan. Taking readers into the heart of these remarkable months, Freedom Summer shines new light on a critical moment of nascent change in America.


 

About Bruce Watson

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BRUCE WATSON's previous books include Sacco and Vanzetti, a finalist for the Edgar Award, and Bread and Roses, a New York Public Library Book to Remember. His journalism has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Smithsonian, and Reader's Digest. He lives in Massachusetts.
 
Published May 26, 2010 by Penguin Books. 387 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Freedom Summer

Kirkus Reviews

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The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) had recruited across college campuses legions of white and black students eager to break open the deeply segregated “closed society” of Mississippi, with its entrenched obstacles to black voting.

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The New York Times

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Bruce Watson looks at a tense summer and the volunteers who hoped to crack a system of segregation.

Jul 18 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

Publishers Weekly

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In this mesmerizing history, Watson (Sacco and Vanzetti) revisits the blistering summer of 1964 when about 700 volunteers arrived in Mississippi to agitate for civil rights and endured horrific harassment, intimidation, and persecution from racist state and private forces.

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The Washington Post

It was known as the "long, hot summer," the place being Mississippi and the time being 1964.

Jul 04 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

BookPage

But the book also depicts the contributions of lesser-known names—courageous figures such as newspaper publisher and editorial writer Hazel Brannon Smith of the Lexington Advertiser, whose anti-lynching and pro-civil rights commentary made her the first woman to win a Pulitzer for editorial writi...

May 26 2015 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

PopMatters

Likewise, the past two years have featured news stories about federal courts forcing one Mississippi county to stop segregating its schools, Ku Klux Klan rallies on the campus of Ole Miss, and even Mississippi resident Morgan Freeman personally funding an integrated school prom because the offici...

Aug 27 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

https://bookpage.com

But the civil rights victory, and its impact on every other human rights movement of the late 20th century, did not come easily.

May 08 2016 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

Lincoln Journal Star

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Sep 18 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

Bookmarks Magazine

But by the time their first night in the state had ended, three volunteers were dead, black churches had burned, and America had a new definition of freedom.

This remarkable chapter in American history, the basis for the controversial film Mississippi Burning, is now the subject of...

Jul 04 2010 | Read Full Review of Freedom Summer: The Savage Se...

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