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The Butler

A Witness to History
Haygood, Wil (Book - 2013 )
Average Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
The Butler
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When acclaimed Washington Post writer Wil Haygood had an early hunch that Obama would win the 2008 election, he thought he'd highlight the singular moment by exploring the life of someone who had come of age when segregation was so widespread, so embedded in the culture, as to make the very thought of a black president inconceivable. He struck gold when he tracked down Eugene Allen, a butler who had served no fewer than eight presidents, from Harry Truman to Ronald Reagan.During his thirty-four years of service, Allen became what the Independent described as a "discreet stagehand who for three decades helped keep the show running in the most important political theatre of all." While serving tea and supervising buffets, Allen was also a witness to history as decisions about America's most momentous events were being made. Here he is at the White House while Kennedy contemplates the Cuban missile crisis: here he is again when Kennedy's widow returns from that fateful day in Dallas. Here he is when Johnson and his cabinet debate Vietnam, and here he is again when Ronald Reagan is finally forced to get tough on apartheid. Perhaps hitting closest to home was the civil rights legislation that was developed, often with passions flaring, right in front of his eyes even as his own community of neighbors, friends, and family were contending with Jim Crow America. With a foreword by the Academy Award-nominated director Lee Daniels, The Butler also includes an essay, in the vein of James Baldwin's jewel The Devil Finds Work, that explores the story of black images on celluloid and in Hollywood, and fifty-seven pictures of Eugene Allen, his family, the presidents he served, and the remarkable cast of the movie.
Authors: Haygood, Wil
Title: The butler
a witness to history
Publisher: New York :, 37 Ink/Atria,, 2013.
Edition: First 37 InkAtria Books hardcover edition.
Characteristics: xii, 96 pages, [32] pages of plates :,illustrations (some color) ;,20 cm
Content Type: text
Media Type: unmediated
Carrier Type: volume
Notes: "The story that inspired the motion picture"--Dust jacket.
Includes an essay on the history of the portrayal of African Americans in motion pictures.
Contents: Foreword / Lee Daniels
The butler's journey
Moving image
Five presidents in the struggle.
Summary: When acclaimed Washington Post writer Wil Haygood had an early hunch that Obama would win the 2008 election, he thought he'd highlight the singular moment by exploring the life of someone who had come of age when segregation was so widespread, so embedded in the culture, as to make the very thought of a black president inconceivable. He struck gold when he tracked down Eugene Allen, a butler who had served no fewer than eight presidents, from Harry Truman to Ronald Reagan.During his thirty-four years of service, Allen became what the Independent described as a "discreet stagehand who for three decades helped keep the show running in the most important political theatre of all." While serving tea and supervising buffets, Allen was also a witness to history as decisions about America's most momentous events were being made. Here he is at the White House while Kennedy contemplates the Cuban missile crisis: here he is again when Kennedy's widow returns from that fateful day in Dallas. Here he is when Johnson and his cabinet debate Vietnam, and here he is again when Ronald Reagan is finally forced to get tough on apartheid. Perhaps hitting closest to home was the civil rights legislation that was developed, often with passions flaring, right in front of his eyes even as his own community of neighbors, friends, and family were contending with Jim Crow America. With a foreword by the Academy Award-nominated director Lee Daniels, The Butler also includes an essay, in the vein of James Baldwin's jewel The Devil Finds Work, that explores the story of black images on celluloid and in Hollywood, and fifty-seven pictures of Eugene Allen, his family, the presidents he served, and the remarkable cast of the movie.
Local Note: 1 6 7 8 9 15 16 17 18 29 35 53 54 56 57 59 61 63 65 67 68 69 70 71 74 76 77 78 79 81 97 102 109 112 118 133 138 148 149 150 151 152 153 156 159 160 167 172 173 175 182 203 210 211 216 222 224 226 231 242 243 244 258 262 263 268
ISBN: 9781476752990
1476752990
Statement of Responsibility: Wil Haygood
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (page 79).
Subject Headings: Allen, Eugene, 1919-2010. Obama, Barack. Butler (Motion picture) Daniels, Lee, 1959- Presidents United States Staff Biography. Butlers Washington (D.C.) Biography. African American household employees Washington (D.C.) Biography. African Americans Washington (D.C.) Biography. African Americans Segregation History 20th century. Race relations in motion pictures. African Americans in motion pictures. United States Race relations Political aspects. Presidents United States Election 2008.
Topical Term: Presidents
Butlers
African American household employees
African Americans
African Americans
Race relations in motion pictures.
African Americans in motion pictures.
Presidents
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Jul 22, 2014
  • Angeleyes8 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The movie that was made based on this book related the story well. I actually seen the movie first but wanted to read the book to see if the movie told the story correctly.

Jul 15, 2014
  • calidreams rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

At not quite one hundred pages this a fast historical read.

If you’re looking for a traditional birth-to-present biography of Eugene Allen, you’re going to want to keep looking. Ditto if you were hoping for an in-depth “behind the scenes” glimpse of what life in the White House was like during different presidencies. This seems to a compilation of various “fly on the wall” moments of varying aspects of Allen’s life, presidencies, the making of the movie, and cinematographic history.

history of civil rights in usa through the eyes of one family, including the u.s. presidents. oprah is so good , i forgot she was oprah. based on a true story, some tearful moments.

Dec 23, 2013
  • Shelley51 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Very interesting story and lots of great pictures. Can't wait to see the movie.

Oct 04, 2013
  • mariednguyen rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

How True Is The Butler?

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2013/08/15/the_butler_movie_true_story_eugene_allen_vs_cecil_gaines_lee_daniels_fictional.html

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Sep 23, 2013
  • mariednguyen rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Other: Release date August 16, 2013 (USA)

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Trailer for The Butler.

Trailer for the Butler, based on the life of Eugene Allen.

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