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The firebrand and the First Lady : portrait of a friendship : Pauli Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, and the struggle for social justice Preview this item
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The firebrand and the First Lady : portrait of a friendship : Pauli Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, and the struggle for social justice

Author: Patricia Bell-Scott
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, [2016] ©2016
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : English : First editionView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Pauli Murray first saw Eleanor Roosevelt in 1933, at the height of the Depression, at a government-sponsored, two-hundred-acre camp for unemployed women where Murray was living, something the first lady had pushed her husband to set up in her effort to do what she could for working women and the poor. The first lady appeared one day unannounced, behind the wheel of her car, her secretary and a Secret Service agent  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Biography
Biographies
Named Person: Eleanor Roosevelt; Pauli Murray; Pauli Murray; Eleanor Roosevelt; Eleanor Roosevelt; Pauli Murray; Eleanor Roosevelt
Material Type: Biography
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Patricia Bell-Scott
ISBN: 9780679446521 0679446524
OCLC Number: 927241537
Description: xix, 454 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Contents: Prelude: Camp Tera, 1933-35 --
Taking aim at the White House, 1938-40 --
Bumping up against the law, 1940-42 --
Making friends with the First Lady, 1942-44 --
Standing up to life's challenges, 1944-45 --
Fashioning new lives, 1945-52 --
Drawing closer as friends, 1952-55 --
Fighting for a just world, 1956-59 --
Lighting the path for new activists, 1959-62 --
Speaking truth to the end, 1963-85. Prelude: Camp Tera, 1933-35 --
Taking aim at the White House, 1938-40. "It is the problem of my people" ; "Members of your race are not admitted" ; "We have to be very careful about the people we select" ; "I am resigning" ; "We ... are the disinherited" ; "It was the highest honor ... to meet and talk with you" ; "When people overwork themselves, ... they must pay for it" --
Bumping up against the law, 1940-42. "Miss Murray was unwise not to comply with the law" ; "Where were we to turn for help?" ; "Will you do what you can to help us?" ; "Might as well become a lawyer" ; "I have done everything I can possibly do" ; "The president has let the Negro down" --
Making friends with the First Lady, 1942-44. "The race problem is a war issue" ; "He really didn't know why women came to law school" ; "Many good things have happened" ; "Forgive my brutal frankness" ; "I count you a real friend" ; "The flowers brought your spirit to the graduation" ; "So at last we have come to D-Day" ; "This Harvard business makes me bristle" --
Standing up to life's challenges, 1944-45. "You wouldn't want to put Fala in here" ; "This letter is confidential" ; "The whole thing has left me very disturbed" ; "I shall shout for the rights of all mankind" ; "I pray for your strength and fortitude" ; "The problem now is how to carry on" --
Fashioning new lives, 1945-52. Just know how cherished you are to so many" ; "Glad to hear the operation was successful" ; "I hope to follow the Roosevelt tradition" ; "I couldn't wait to give you one of the first copies" ; "I have to stand or fall with the people who know me" --
Drawing closer as friends, 1952-55. "I could write in privacy without interruption" ; "We consider you a member of the family" ; "I was deeply moved that you counted me among your close friends" ; "I know how much this decision means to you" ; "I cannot live with fear" ; "Some fear-mongers may feel that even President Eisenhower might be a security risk" ; "What I have to say now is entirely personal" ; "What a wonderful weekend it was" ; "You might ... comment from the special woman's angle" ; "I cannot afford to be a piker" --
Fighting for a just world, 1956-59. "There appears to be a cleavage" ; "You're a bit of a firebrand yourself" ; "You caught the feeling I had in mind" ; "I never cease to marvel at the greatness of your humanity" ; "Our friendship produced sparks of sheer joy" ; "You can say we had a friendly conversation, but we differ" ; "The chips are really down in Little Rock" ; "Discrimination does something intangible and harmful" ; "There are times when a legal brief is inadequate" ; "That granddaughter must be a chip off the venerable block" --
Lighting the path for new activists, 1959-62. "Nothing I had read or heard prepared me" ; "It is a bit of a pest to have to keep still" ; "I hope you were not in danger" ; "Read that you had a bad case of flu" ; "I am as well as anyone can be at my age" ; "Would you please bring me a glass of lemonade?" ; "We shall be working doubly hard to carry on" --
Speaking truth to the end, 1963-85. "Mrs. Roosevelt's spirit marches on" ; "I have been a person with an independent inquiring mind" ; "Mrs. R. seemed to have been forgotten" ; "The missing element ... is theological" ; "God's presence is as close as the touch of a loved one's hand" ; "Hopefully, we have picked up the candle" ; "Eleanor Roosevelt was the most visible symbol of autonomy" ; "All the strands of my life had come together."
Other Titles: Portrait of a friendship, Pauli Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, and the struggle for social justice
Responsibility: Patricia Bell-Scott.

Abstract:

Pauli Murray first saw Eleanor Roosevelt in 1933, at the height of the Depression, at a government-sponsored, two-hundred-acre camp for unemployed women where Murray was living, something the first lady had pushed her husband to set up in her effort to do what she could for working women and the poor. The first lady appeared one day unannounced, behind the wheel of her car, her secretary and a Secret Service agent her passengers. To Murray, then aged twenty-three, Roosevelt's self-assurance was a symbol of women's independence, a symbol that endured throughout Murray's life. Five years later, Pauli Murray, a twenty-eight-year-old aspiring writer, wrote a letter to Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt protesting racial segregation in the South. The president's staff forwarded Murray's letter to the federal Office of Education. The first lady wrote back. Murray's letter was prompted by a speech the president had given at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, praising the school for its commitment to social progress. Pauli Murray had been denied admission to the Chapel Hill graduate school because of her race. She wrote in her letter of 1938: "Does it mean that Negro students in the South will be allowed to sit down with white students and study a problem which is fundamental and mutual to both groups? Does it mean that the University of North Carolina is ready to open its doors to Negro students? Or does it mean, that everything you said has no meaning for us as Negroes, that again we are to be set aside and passed over?" Eleanor Roosevelt wrote to Murray: "I have read the copy of the letter you sent me and I understand perfectly, but great changes come slowly ... The South is changing, but don't push too fast." So began a friendship between Pauli Murray (poet, intellectual rebel, principal strategist in the fight to preserve Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, cofounder of the National Organization for Women, and the first African American female Episcopal priest) and Eleanor Roosevelt (first lady of the United States, later first chair of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, and chair of the President's Commission on the Status of Women) that would last for a quarter of a century. Drawing on letters, journals, diaries, published and unpublished manuscripts, and interviews, Patricia Bell-Scott gives us the first close-up portrait of this evolving friendship and how it was sustained over time, what each gave to the other, and how their friendship changed the cause of American social justice.
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