SPEAKING OUT: The Autobiography of Lester Maddox by Lester Maddox

SPEAKING OUT: The Autobiography of Lester Maddox

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Lester Maddox is the former governor of Georgia who built a political career on his 1964 refusal, with a pistol in his own hand and a pick handle in his son's, to seat blacks in his fried chicken restaurant. He was born in Atlanta in 1915, the son of an alcoholic mill hand and a Baptist Bible-thumper. He dropped out in the tenth grade to work at the same mill which had long since fired his father. Later, he attracted public attention with the conservative and racist ads he ran in local newspapers as promotional stunts for the infamous Pickrick restaurant. Despite a Dale Carnegie course, he lost his first three elections; but after the Pickrick Kampf (he describes his persecution and harassment by the ""police state,"" the Warren Court, ""civil rights agitators,"" ""revolutionaries and bums,"" the ""rabble,"" etc., etc., etc.) he eked out enough support from neighbors who agreed that segregation was ""the Lord's work"" to win a runoff--over the opposition and persecution of the ""kingmakers"" and the ""radical-liberal press."" He has a tendency to refer to himself in the third person and imagines himself a public scourge surrounded by hypocrisy, corruption and enemies of all color and political stripe. A case study in the etiology of blue-collar bigotry and demagoguery at its spoken-out worst.

Pub Date: Dec. 5th, 1975
Publisher: Doubleday