VERNON CAN READ! A Memoir

Vernon E. Jordan, Jr., Author, Annette Gordon-Reed, Joint Author with Annette Gordon-Reed. Public Affairs $26 (336p) ISBN 978-1-891620-69-0

While Jordan's autobiography garnered interest from the moment its publication was announced, its ultimate form surprises. Disappointment awaits those expecting Clinton/ Lewinsky dirt, since the book "effectively ends in the 1980s. All that has happened to me since then is too close to be considered true memories," Jordan writes. But his narrative mission here is not recent political scandal. Jordan means to "bridge the gap" between the years African-Americans were forced to move to the back of the bus and the time when "a young black girl [Vernon's daughter Vickee] could be so confident in her humanity that she found it unfathomable that anyone could try and take it away from her." The bridge, of course, is Jordan himself, and he tells his success story with a concentration and devotion that gives it all the fervor and logic of a good long speech. While readers are treated to some particulars of Jordan's youth (waiting tables for his mother's catering business, attending segregated Atlanta schools in the 1940s and early '50s and then the predominantly white DePauw University) and the trajectory of his early career as a field director for the NAACP, executive director of the United Negro College Fund and president of the National Urban League), there are few more personal revelations. With its lack of extraneous detail and its studious avoidance of private thoughts, this is less a traditional memoir than an extended exposition of an impressive CV. Even so, it should remind people of this chapter in American history and Jordan's crucial role in it. (Oct. 22)

Forecast:With Jordan's high profile, this is an automatic big seller. If it's marketed correctly, it should have a wide appeal, too—anyone interested in the history of the civil rights movement will appreciate this detailed account of the people and organizations that helped transform a segregated nation.

Reviewed on: 10/15/2001
Release date: 10/01/2001
Show other formats
FORMATS
Analog Audio Cassette - 10 pages - 978-1-58648-126-1
Compact Disc - 978-0-7927-9949-8
Hardcover - 600 pages - 978-0-7862-4100-2
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7927-2517-6
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-0-465-03697-4
Paperback - 343 pages - 978-1-58648-670-9
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-1-283-13776-8
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.