surely as the stories that your grandparents and neighbors repeat time and
time again are in their banality the most real accounts of the time, Sara
Parsons account of her life in Atlanta during the civil rights era adds a
refreshing perspective on a familiar tale...
some point, I found myself lost in her name dropping. At times, her
rambling recollections seemed like empty anecdotes. Her voice is the voice
of the everywoman. The everywoman’s journey of self. Set during a truly
frustrating and extraordinary time in America’s history, Parson’s
story traces the lines of integration and foot-dragging bigotry. She does
not paint herself as the all-knowing, all-doing white woman, but as a
person merely stumbling through the maze of life.
might say that Parson was not an activist never marching or sitting in,
but in her way she chiseled a hole and then a fingerhold in her lily
white, isolate world of PTA’s, Sunday school, and lady’s bridge games.
Her newly awakened consciousness looked around and found her longing for
more than to be Mrs Ray Parsons. Known as more than the wife of, Instead
of living her cozy life among her pleasant friends, she rose and chose to
work equality in education. She looked at Atlanta and questioned the
silent acceptance of the Church. She vocalized opinions that few Atlantans-
white or black would.
at time, one can see how she might not have sparked adoration from some in
the movement, such as Stokely Carmichael, one can wonder how a woman
might gradually wake from the dream of racial isolation and see for the
first time the wrongs that had been preached to her as right, how that
woman might shake off the cocoon of her comfortable life and work
tirelessly and vocally for all of Atlanta’s child to have access to the
best education- good books, good schools, good teachers.
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