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Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Movement

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An award-winning national bestseller, Walking with the Wind is one of our most important records of the American Civil Rights Movement. Told by John Lewis, who Cornel West calls a “national treasure,” this is a gripping first-hand account of the fight for civil rights and the courage it takes to change a nation.

In 1957, a teenaged boy named John Lewis left a cotton farm in Alabama for Nashville, the epicenter of the struggle for civil rights in America. Lewis’s adherence to nonviolence guided that critical time and established him as one of the movement’s most charismatic and courageous leaders. Lewis’s leadership in the Nashville Movement—a student-led effort to desegregate the city of Nashville using sit-in techniques based on the teachings of Gandhi—set the tone for major civil rights campaigns of the 1960s. Lewis traces his role in the pivotal Selma marches, Bloody Sunday, and the Freedom Rides. Inspired by his mentor, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Lewis’s vision and perseverance altered history. In 1986, he ran and won a congressional seat in Georgia, and remains in office to this day, continuing to enact change.

The late Edward M. Kennedy said of Lewis, “John tells it like it was...Lewis spent most of his life walking against the wind of the times, but he was surely walking with the wind of history.”

ISBN-13: 9781476797717

Media Type: Paperback

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Publication Date: 02-10-2015

Pages: 544

Product Dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.60(d)

John Lewis was the US Representative for Georgia’s fifth district, a position he has held since 1987. He passed away in 2020. Michael D’Orso is the author of sixteen books, which include Oceana, Plundering Paradise, and The Cost of Courage. His work has been featured or reviewed in The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, and other publications.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xiii

Prologue xv

Part I Coming Up

1 "That Was Some Hard Times" 3

2 A Small World, a Safe World 16

3 Pilot Light 32

Part II Nashville

4 "The Boy From Troy" 57

5 Soul Force 71

6 "Nigras, Nigras Everywhere!" 90

Part III Freedom Ride

7 "This is the Students" 115

8 Last Supper 130

9 Mr. Greyhound 146

Part IV Snick

10 Raise Up The Rug 175

11 "We March Today" 202

12 "Keep Your Stick Down" 232

Part V "Uhuru"

13 "Feel Angry With Me" 261

14 Freedom Fighters 283

15 Into Selma 300

Part VI Going Down

16 Bloody Sunday 335

17 De-Election 363

18 "Why?" 393

Part VII Home

19 The New South 425

20 Old Ghosts 452

21 Onward 480

Index 504