Just to be historically accurate, and to satisfy the teacher in me, Emmett Till was a 14 year old African-American from Chicago who visited his grandfather, Mose Wright, in Money, Mississippi for the summer. Emmett was talking with some new friends outside a grocery store one day and bragging about how, in Chicago, he had white friends and a white girl friend. Some of the kids in the group thought he was lying to them and one of the southern boys said, "Hey, there is a white girl in that store, I bet you won't go in there and talk to her." So he went into the store, bought some candy and on his way out said, "Bye, Baby" to the white woman. The next night her husband, Roy Bryant, and some other men, went to Mose Wrights house and dragged Emmett Till out, and he was found dead and mutilated three days later. Of historical importance is that JET Magazine ran a picture of his mutilated body laying in the open casket, a wish from his mother who wanted the world to se "what they did to my son." That was an exposure that few Americans had seen before, the brutality of whites against blacks. Secondly, mose Wright went into hiding, protected by the NAACP, until the trial, then returned to point out in court the men who came to his house that night. A black man brave enough to stand up in public and testify against whites was another rarity in our national history. Dylan, was involved with Suze Rotolo at the time who was working as a Secretary for CORE (Congress on Racial Equality) in New York and she told him the story of ET. He then wrote the song as a fundraiser for CORE and James Farmer, then the NY President of CORE. I use this song, Hattie Carrol,and Hurricane for my class to discuss the legal oppression of black Americans by a system that should "make us feel ashamed/to live in a country where Justice is but a game."The quotes in the above post come from the Eyes on The Prize companion book published by PBS. Thanks, no Mid-term for this group.
Date: Fri, 21 Apr 1995 08:15:02 EDT From: Paul Schnee (Paul.Schnee@DARTMOUTH.EDU) Subject: Re: Emmett Till Novel For those of you interested in a fictionalized take on the Emmett Till story, I refer you to Lewis Nordan's brilliant, searing novel "Wolf Whistle," published by Algonquin Books. A stunning read. Check it out.
Date: Sat, 22 Apr 1995 03:55:53 -0500 From: email@example.com (Ed Ricardo) Subject: Re: Emmet Till Author: Campbell, Bebe Moore, 1950- Title: Your blues ain't like mine / Bebe Moore Campbell. New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, c1992. Description: 332 p. ; 24 cm. An EDLIS informant tells me this novel is related to the story of Emmett Till. American readers no doubt know this and find it obvious, but I was unaware of the novel. Can anyone comment on its relationship to Emmett Till, the person or the song? Ed
Emmett Till honored (Chicago Sun-Times May 26, 2002
The Murder of Emmett Till (Early Civil Rights Struggles)
The Death of Emmett Till (History in Song)
The Murder of Emmett Till - (pbs)