by Jervis Anderson
Bayard Rustin was one of the most complex and interesting of the black intellectuals during a period of dramatic change in America. He is perhaps best known as the organizer of the 1963 march on Washington, where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his memorable 'I Have a Dream' speech. Although Rustin headed no civil rights organization, during most of his career he was a moral and tactical spokesman for them all. Committed to the Gandhian principle of non-violence, he was the movement's ablest strategist and an indispensable intellectual resource for such major black leaders as Dr. King, A. Philip Randolph, Roy Wilkins, Whitney Young, Dorothy Height and James Farmer. Rustin not only helped to organize the Montgomery bus boycott of 1955 - 56 but also drew up the original plan for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the organization that spearheaded King's nonviolent crusade. In this landmark biography, historian and biographer Jervis Anderson gives a full account of the life of this inspiring figure. With complete access to Rustin's papers and the cooperation of Rustin's friends and colleagues, Anderson has written an enriching and insightful book on the life of one of the most important heroes of the movements for civil rights and social reform.
Paperback; 418 pages