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Oxford University Press Inc
15 November 2018
Biography: historical, political & military; History; History of the Americas; Social & cultural history; Black & Asian studies; Civil rights & citizenship
The world knows the story of young Emmett Till. In August 1955, the fourteen-year-old Chicago boy supposedly flirted with a white woman named Carolyn Bryant, who worked behind the counter of a country store, while visiting family in Mississippi. Three days later, his mangled body was recovered in the Tallahatchie River, weighed down by a cotton-gin fan. Till's killers, Bryant's husband and his half-brother, were eventually acquitted on technicalities by an all-white jury despite overwhelming evidence. It seemed another case of Southern justice.Then details of what had happened to Till became public, which they did in part because Emmett's mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, insisted that his casket remain open during his funeral. The world saw the horror, and Till's story gripped the country and sparked outrage. Black journalists drove down to Mississippi and risked their lives interviewing townsfolk, encouraging witnesses, spiriting those in danger out of the region, and above all keeping the news cycle turning. It continues to turn. In 2005, fifty years after the murder, the FBI reopened the case. New papers and testimony have come to light, and several participants, including Till's mother, have published autobiographies. Using this new evidence and a broadened historical context, Elliott J. Gorn delves more fully than anyone has into how and why the story of Emmett Till still resonates, and always will. Till's murder marked a turning point, Gorn shows, and yet also reveals how old patterns of thought and behavior endure, and why we must look hard at them.
By:   Elliott J. Gorn (Joseph A. Gagliano Chair in American Urban History Joseph A. Gagliano Chair in American Urban History Loyola University)
Imprint:   Oxford University Press Inc
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 244mm,  Width: 166mm,  Spine: 31mm
Weight:   648g
ISBN:   9780199325122
ISBN 10:   019932512X
Pages:   392
Publication Date:   15 November 2018
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Elliott J. Gorn is Joseph A. Gagliano Chair in American Urban History at Loyola University Chicago. He is author of several books, including Dillinger's Wild Ride: The Year that Made America's Public Enemy Number One.

Reviews for Let the People See: The Story of Emmett Till

This perceptive take on a signal event from the civil rights movement deserves a wide readership. - Publishers Weekly, Starred Review As racially motivated violence and death still haunt American communities, 'Let the People See' reminds us all both how far the country has come and how much farther it has to go. - Foreword Reviews, Five Star Review Let the People See is a timely book about the fragility of collective memory and about the courage and persistence of journalists, particularly black journalists, some of whom risked their lives in 1955 to get the facts of the Till story before the public. Most of all though, [the book] is a vivid reminder of just how easy it is for people not to see things they'd rather not see. - Maureen Corrigan, NPR/WHYY's Fresh Air


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