Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

Mildred D. Taylor

“In Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, I included the teachings of my own childhood, the values and principles by which I and so many other Black children were reared, for I wanted to show a different kind of Black world from the one so often seen. I wanted to show a family united in love and self-respect, and parents, strong and sensitive, attempting to guide their children successfully, without harming their spirits, through the hazardous maze of living in a discriminatory society.

“I also wanted to show the Black person as heroic. In my own school days, a class devoted to the history of Black people in the United States always caused me painful embarrassment. This would not have been so if that history had been presented truly, showing the accomplishments of the Black race both in Africa and in this hemisphere. But as it was, the indictment of slavery was also an indictment of the people who were enslaved. A people who, according to the texts, were docile and childlike, accepting their fate without once attempting to free themselves. To me, this lackluster history of Black people totally devoid of any heroic or pride-building qualities, was as much a condemnation of myself as it was of my ancestors. I used to sit tensely waiting out those class hours trying to think of ways to repudiate what the textbooks said, for I recognized that there was a terrible contradiction between what was in them and what I learned at home.

“It is my hope that to the children who read my books, the Logans will provide those heroes missing from the schoolbooks of my childhood, Black men, women, and children of whom they can be proud.” — Mildred D. Taylor

There is much drama in Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry! There is more action in this story about what it meant to be a Black kid during the depression era in Mississippi then most “urban fiction” tales of today. One difference is that Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry! makes you proud that the Logans fought the Klan instead of each other.

Cloth 17.99
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Paper 7.99
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CD 34.00
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