by A. J. Baime
A much-needed new biography of an exceptionally courageous civil rights leader who is too little known today. Walter F. White led two lives: one as a leader of the Harlem Renaissance and the NAACP in the early twentieth century; the other as a white newspaperman who covered lynching crimes in the Deep South. Born mixed race and with fair skin and straight hair, White was able to pass for white. He leveraged this ambiguity as a reporter, bringing to light the most horrendous crimes in America and helping to plant the seeds of the civil rights movement. White was simultaneously a second-class citizen subject to Jim Crow laws at home and in his risky career a widely respected professional in the white world. His life was fraught with internal and external conflict - much like the story of race in America.
See the Jones Library Antiracism Book List for recommended titles for all ages.