Author Topic: Review: ‘The Fire This Time,’ Stoked by Baldwin’s Legacy  (Read 1412 times)

Offline imchills

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When the Mississippi-born writer Jesmyn Ward was in high school, she and five members of her class visited the office of Trent Lott, one of her state’s senators, in Washington.

Ms. Ward would soon be on her way to Stanford, where she received her undergraduate degree. On this day she was one of six young people excited to be away from home, and the only African-American.

In her introduction to “The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race,” an anthology of essays she has edited, Ms. Ward describes what happened there. “Trent Lott took a whip as long as a car off his office table, where it lay coiled and shiny brown, and said to my one male schoolmate who grinned at Lott enthusiastically: Let’s show ‘em how us good old boys do it. And then he swung that whip through the air and cracked it above our heads, again and again. I remember the experience in my bones.”