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the Meaning of Matthew by Judy Shepard

the Meaning of Matthew (edition 2009)

by Judy Shepard

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184564,254 (4.27)4
Title:the Meaning of Matthew
Authors:Judy Shepard
Info:Hudson Street Press (2009), Paperback
Collections:Your library
Tags:Library, LGBT, Biography, True Crime, Sociology

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The Meaning of Matthew: My Son's Murder in Laramie, and a World Transformed by Judy Shepard



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Written and read by Matthew's mother. She tells of his life and horrible murder. A very disturbing story to hear, one that I will never understand. A senseless murder stemming from intolerance and hate. A must read book in my opinion. ( )
  SenoraG163 | Sep 10, 2011 |
Without a doubt one of the most heart wrenching memoir I've ever read. I cried for Matthew and the people he loved the most. His life brutally cut short because of who he was. This is a clarion call for all of us. That hate needs to be replaced with love. EVERYONE should read this book! ( )
  bookalover89 | Feb 14, 2011 |
I picked up this book at my local bookstore as I sat down with my tea to continue reading a book by Temple Grandin. The cover, with a picture of Matthew Shepard looking so young and innocent, caught my eye, and then I saw that the book was by his mother. Looking to occupy the time until I had to pick up my daughter, I opened the book to browse. Within minutes I flipped back to the beginning and began to read. A couple of hours later, I had purchased the book and was reflecting on how little we know about what we think we know based on media reporting.

In October 1998 Matthew Shepard was tied to a fence in Laramie, Wyoming and beaten to death for being gay. Few Americans could avoid the media coverage of the horrible hate crime, not long after the dragging death of a African American man in Jasper, Texas. But despite all the coverage, my impressions of Matthew were rather flat and one dimensional. Judy Shepard's memoir of her son changed that. As Matthew's mother reminds us, Matthew was a human, not a saint, and not a stereotype. His life was complex but loving, and in writing the book, Judy Shepard conveys that in an honest, unpitiying way that drew me in and wouldn't let me go.

I would recommend this book to everyone as a reminder that we cannot let hate win, but must actively seek to counter it emphatically and with persistence. ( )
  labfs39 | Jul 19, 2010 |
a very touching, sad, yet inspiring story. You will feel angry and sad but experience some redemption by the end of the book. I read the library's copy. ( )
  SigmundFraud | Feb 4, 2010 |
The murder of Matthew Shepard gained worldwide attention in October, 1998 when two homophobic men tied Matthew to a tree, tortured and beat him, and left him for dead. Matt died 6 days later. His family has since become advocates for tolerance, and witnessed President Obama's signing of the Matthew Shepard Act, adding sexual orientation to federal hate crime law. Mrs. Shepard's book includes a brief introduction to Matt's life, the horrific story of their bedside vigil, and the maddening trial of the perpetrators of the murder. Shepard evokes the emotions extremely well, and presents an honest look at the complicated life and death of her son. Very difficult reading, but the work of the Matthew Shepard Foundation in educating young people and promoting acceptance of all differences adds a hopeful note to the end. ( )
2 vote profilerSR | Jan 24, 2010 |
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This book is dedicated to all the "Matts" out there who feel that Matt's story is a reflection of their own struggle. Hope is out there and change is coming.
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It's often said that we see a white light before we die.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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The mother of Matthew Shepard shares her story about her son's death and the choice she made to become an international gay rights activist. Today, the name Matthew Shepard is synonymous with gay rights, but before his grisly murder in 1998, Matthew was simply her son. For the first time in book form, Judy Shepard speaks about her loss, sharing memories of Matthew, their life as a typical American family, and the pivotal event that changed everything. The book follows the Shepard family in the days after the crime, when their incapacitated son was on life support; how they learned of the response from strangers all across America who held candlelit vigils and memorial services for their child; and finally, how they struggled to navigate the legal system as Matthew's murderers were on trial. It not only captures the historical significance and civil rights issues, but it also chronicles one ordinary woman's struggle to cope with the unthinkable.--From publisher description.… (more)

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