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Autobiography & Memoirs

An Integrated Boyhood

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs, Voices of Diversity
BeFunky_Richards

In An Integrated Boyhood, Richards candidly describes how this exemplary middle-class Cleveland sojourn left him hopelessly confused and dislocated at the very moment of his parents’ triumph. His narrative of success provides the background to a more private turmoil: Richards’s struggle to read the shifting meanings of his privileged experience amid the city’s shifting racial lines, the fringe on the Left, the tumult of rising black consciousness, and the fears of nervous white suburban neighbors. This coming-of-age story sings the undersong of an older generation’s hard-won success. Like all black Clevelanders, Richards was forced to struggle for his understanding of the city’s—and his own—endless racial confusion in the midst of frightening historical change. It is this reality that recurs throughout Richards’s memoir: the early encounters of a scared, bookish African American boy from Mt. Pleasant with what can only be described as the real world.

 


In Those Days

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs, Diplomatic Studies
Spain Book Cover

In Those Days is the candid, often funny, autobiography of a twentieth-century American diplomat who spent most of his life in high-level diplomacy in Asia and Africa. The story takes James Spain form an Irish Catholic childhood in gangster-era Chicago through military service as Douglas MacArthur’s photographer in occupied Japan and university life at Chicago and a Ph.D. from Columbia. His Foreign Service career brought postings in Islamabad, Istanbul, and Ankara and four ambassadorships—in Tanzania, Turkey, the United Nations (as deputy permanent representative), and Sri Lanka.

 


Being Present

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs, History
Schumann Book Cover

“Born in 1927, Schumann scrupulously relates and analyzes his life in Nazi Germany and his post-1945 experiences that finally brought him to the U.S. Eschewing self-pity, he successfully demonstrates how and why he was an ardent supporter of the Nazi regime to its end and describes its values, inculcated by Hitler Youth meetings and newspaper and radio propaganda, and undergirded by an adventurousness of youth….The chapters of life after 1945 show how some Germans were gradually transformed into supporters of democracy.”—Choice

 


Growing Up With Clemente

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs, Sports
Clemente Book Cover

Growing Up With Clemente is a personal history of the hardscrabble life of Pittsburgh’s South Side during the city’s post–World War II renaissance. It is also the intimate story of an American boy who played baseball on the city’s dilapidated playgrounds and rooted for his beloved sports teams while growing up and struggling in Pittsburgh’s blue-collar neighborhoods. Though among the worst professional teams in the 1950s, the Pirates and Steelers still inspired the working-class dream of a life beyond the steel mills. And in the midst of it all was the towering, isolated figure of Roberto Clemente. Clemente would eventually become a symbol of pride, loyalty, courage, and sacrifice for a city that had initially rejected him and for a young boy who spent his youth looking for a hero but had to grow up before understanding Clemente’s greatness.

 


Front-Page Girl

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs
Girl Book Cover

Prior to World War II, women were a rarity in the newsrooms of daily papers throughout the country. The assignments given to those few who graced the profession reflected the newspaper culture of the time—society, fashion, and school news. Doris O’Donnell proved the exception. While she began her journalism career with those routine tasks, in short order she broke those barriers and assumed more challenging duties of investigative reporting and covering the crime beat.

 


Pattern of Circles

| Filed under: Autobiography & Memoirs, Diplomatic Studies, European & World History
Dolibois Book Cover

Pattern of Circles is a success story, for its author and his country. John E. Dolibois was born December 4, 1918, in Luxembourg. His mother died weeks later, and he was raised by an older sister until she left for Akron, Ohio, with her American husband. In 1931 John came to Akron with his father and thus began a fascinating life journey.

 


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