Pioneering Black Journalist Ethel Payne and Civil Rights Movement
On the September 14 edition of KAZI Book Review at 8 a.m. on KAZI 88.7 FM ,local Austin writer Evelyn Martin Anderson joins Hopeton Hay to interview James McGrath Morris, author of EYE ON THE STRUGGLE: Ethel Payne, The First Lady of the Black Press. In EYE ON THE STRUGGLE, Morris skillfully illuminates the life and accomplishments of pioneering journalist Ethel Lois Payne, while also bringing to the fore the critical role of the black press in the civil rights era.
Payne used her journalistic skills as the Washington correspondent for the Chicago Defender to elevate civil rights issues to the national agenda. In the 1950s and 1960s, she raised challenging questions at presidential press conferences about matters of importance to African Americans and the emerging civil rights movement.
James McGrath Morris is an author of biographies and narrative nonfiction. His works include Pulitzer: A Life in Politics, Print, and Power—which the Wall Street Journal deemed was one of the five best books on American and The Rose Man of Sing Sing: A True Tale of Life, Murder, and Redemption in the Age of Yellow Journalism—a Washington Post Best Book of the Year. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Morris spent a decade as a journalist, a decade working in the book and magazine business, and a decade as a high school teacher.