Sat 18 Apr 2009
Upon being named the first black editor of the Harvard Law Review, Barack Obama was asked to write his memoirs. A year later he published Dreams from My Father, A Story of Race and Inheritance. The book is well written (maybe it’s too good? my brother suspects it’s ghostwritten) and is the melancholic reflections of a troubled man and his struggle for self identity, meaning and purpose.
It chronicles Obama’s life in Hawaii, Indonesia, and inner city Chicago (as a community organizer) and his first trip to Kenya. Warning: the language is at times course and vulgar. On the upside, you’ll find the book is very open and honest; Obama admits to drug use, alcohol and smoking and womanizing. The 442 pages take a while to read because the book raises thoughtful questions about race relations, family ties, and the controversial Reverend Wright.
Fast fact: his friends and family call him Barry. Here’s an excerpt from the book, page 287:
[They would ask me,] Why don’t you come by on Sunday? And I would shrug and play the question off, unable to confess that I could no longer distinguish between faith and mere folly, between faith and simple endurance; that while I believed in the sincerity I heard in their voices, I remained a reluctant skeptic, doubtful of my own motives, wary of expedient conversion, having too many quarrels with God to accept a salvation too easily won.