Standing Up And Speaking Out
On Sale: November 3, 2008
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Non-Fiction Memoir | Non-Fiction Political
Black Americans have always relied on the oral
tradition—storytelling, preaching, and speechmaking—to
assert their rights and preserve and pass on their history
and culture. In the pulpit, courtroom, or cotton field, they
have understood the power of words, distinctively delivered,
to educate and inspire.
Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., one of the
nation’s finest speakers, imbibed this tradition as a young
man and has given it his own unique inflection from his work
on the civil rights front lines, to the National Urban
League, to positions of influence at the highest level of
business and politics. A friend and confidant to presidents,
Jordan has never forgotten the men and women—from Ruby
Hurley to Wiley Branton to Gardner C. Taylor to Martin
Luther King, Jr.—whose oratorical skill in service to social
justice deeply influenced him. Their examples and voices,
reflected in Vernon’s own, make this book both a history and
an embodiment of black speech at its finest: Full of
emotion, controlled force, righteous indignation, love of
country, and awe in front of the God-given challenges
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