Summary: In Death of Innocence, Mamie Till-Mobley tells the tragic story of her son, Emmett Till -- an innocent, fourteen-year-old African-American boy who was murdered -- and of her subsequent actions which helped to galvanize the civil rights movement, leaving an indelible mark on American racial consciousness.
Mamie Carthan was an ordinary African-American woman growing up in 1930s Chicago, living under the strong, steady influence of her mother's care. She even ...show moretually married and had a baby boy, Emmett.
In August 1955, Emmett was visiting family in Mississippi when he was kidnapped from his bed in the middle of the night by two white men and brutally murdered. His crime: allegedly whistling at a white woman in a convenience store. Maime began her career of activism when she insisted on an open-casket viewing of her son's gruesomely disfigured body. More than a hundred thousand people attended the service. The trial of J. W. Milam and Roy Bryant, accused of kidnapping and murdering Emmett (the two were eventually acquitted of the crime), was considered the first full-scale media event of the civil rights movement.
What followed altered the course of this country's history, and it was all set in motion by the sheer will and determination of Mamie Till-Mobley -- a woman who would pull herself back from the brink of suicide to become a teacher and inspire hundreds of black children throughout the country.
Mamie Till-Mobley, who died in 2003 just as she completed this memoir, has finally given her full testimony: "I focused on my son while I considered this book....The result is in your hands....I am experienced, but not cynical....I am hopeful that we all can be better than we are. I've been brokenhearted, but I still maintain an oversized capacity for love."
Death of Innocence is an essential document in the annals of American civil rights history, and a painful yet necessary account of a mother's ability to transform personal tragedy into courage and hope, and consequently affect social change. ...show less
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