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Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and…

Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance

by Barack Obama

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7,489180732 (3.93)293
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» See also 293 mentions

English (171)  Norwegian (2)  French (2)  Spanish (2)  Dutch (2)  German (1)  All languages (180)
Showing 1-5 of 171 (next | show all)
I enjoyed listening to Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance by Barack Obama. The book was first published in 1995, well before he became involved in politics, which is why I chose it. I think I liked the recollections from his youth (prior to college) the most. It represented a teenager trying to develop a sense of identity and also a biracial kid trying to figure out where he fits in, not only within society but within his family. The chapters devoted to his professional endeavors in Chicago were interesting but a bit tedious. Overall though, I thought Obama was a good storyteller and excellent narrator. ( )
  This-n-That | Feb 22, 2019 |
It was interesting to read about Obama's growing up and how his extended family was like. However, it was a bit hard to understand his struggles with his identity and what being a black means. But I did go away with a better understanding of how tough it is being a minority in America, and that made me think it should be likewise for the minorities in Singapore. ( )
  siok | Nov 18, 2018 |
Even without knowing the author, this is a very good story, especially in the first half. (The trip to Kenya is a bit overdrawn.) Knowing the author, I think it gives a good perspective on the origins of Obama's values and insecurities. ( )
  breic | Sep 5, 2018 |
I think I read this around 2008 prior to the election. I remember it was very good about his early years. I enjoyed his writing and his life story. ( )
  ajlewis2 | Jul 11, 2018 |
I may come back to this book. I truly enjoyed reading the first part, about his childhood, and I'm impressed with the writing. But I just can't drum up the enthusiasm to read about his Chigago years. Putting this on the Lost Interest shelf for now. ( )
  Kim_Sasso | Mar 14, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 171 (next | show all)
All men live in the shadow of their fathers -- the more distant the father, the deeper the shadow. Barack Obama describes his confrontation with this shadow in his provocative autobiography, "Dreams From My Father," and he also persuasively describes the phenomenon of belonging to two different worlds, and thus belonging to neither.

» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Obama, BarackAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Zwart, JoostTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"For we are strangers before them, and sojourners, as were all our fathers. I Chronicles 29:15.
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A few months after my twenty-first birthday, a stranger called to give me the news.
They are NOT my people.

(No quotation marks.)

Pg. 47

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0307383415, Hardcover)

Nine years before the Senate campaign that made him one of the most influential and compelling voices in American politics, Barack Obama published this lyrical, unsentimental, and powerfully affecting memoir, which became a #1 New York Times bestseller when it was reissued in 2004. Dreams from My Father tells the story of Obama’s struggle to understand the forces that shaped him as the son of a black African father and white American mother—a struggle that takes him from the American heartland to the ancestral home of his great-aunt in the tiny African village of Alego.

Obama opens his story in New York, where he hears that his father—a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man—has died in a car accident. The news triggers a chain of memories as Barack retraces his family’s unusual history: the migration of his mother’s family from small-town Kansas to the Hawaiian islands; the love that develops between his mother and a promising young Kenyan student, a love nurtured by youthful innocence and the integrationist spirit of the early sixties; his father’s departure from Hawaii when Barack was two, as the realities of race and power reassert themselves; and Barack’s own awakening to the fears and doubts that exist not just between the larger black and white worlds but within himself.

Propelled by a desire to understand both the forces that shaped him and his father’s legacy, Barack moves to Chicago to work as a community organizer. There, against the backdrop of tumultuous political and racial conflict, he works to turn back the mounting despair of the inner city. His story becomes one with those of the people he works with as he learns about the value of community, the necessity of healing old wounds, and the possibility of faith in the midst of adversity.

Barack’s journey comes full circle in Kenya, where he finally meets the African side of his family and confronts the bitter truth of his father’s life. Traveling through a country racked by brutal poverty and tribal conflict, but whose people are sustained by a spirit of endurance and hope, Barack discovers that he is inescapably bound to brothers and sisters living an ocean away—and that by embracing their common struggles he can finally reconcile his divided inheritance.

A searching meditation on the meaning of identity in America, Dreams from My Father might be the most revealing portrait we have of a major American leader—a man who is playing, and will play, an increasingly prominent role in healing a fractious and fragmented nation.

Pictured in lefthand photograph on cover: Habiba Akumu Hussein and Barack Obama, Sr. (President Obama's paternal grandmother and his father as a young boy). Pictured in righthand photograph on cover: Stanley Dunham and Ann Dunham (President Obama's maternal grandfather and his mother as a young girl).

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:49 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The son of an African father and white American mother discusses his childhood in Hawaii, his struggle to find his identity as an African American, and his life accomplishments.

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Canongate Books

4 editions of this book were published by Canongate Books.

Editions: 1847670911, 1847670946, 1847674380, 1847673287

Penguin Australia

3 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 1921351438, 1921520620, 1921520515

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