The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
On Sale: September 7, 2010
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In this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer
Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the
great untold stories of American history: the decades-long
migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern
and western cities, in search of a better life. From 1915 to
1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the
face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to
the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed
more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data
and official records, to write this definitive and vividly
dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded,
altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.
With stunning historical detail, Wilkerson tells this story
through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae
Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in
Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet
blue-collar success and, in old age, voted for Barack Obama
when he ran for an Illinois Senate seat; sharp and
quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for
Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil
rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God;
and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a
medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as
part of a glitteringly successful medical career, which
allowed him to purchase a grand home where he often threw
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