Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work/Biography -- in paperback for the first time.
In turbulent times Americans look to the Civil Rights Movement as the apotheosis of political expression. As we confront questions of social inequality there's no better time to revisit the lessons of the '60s and no better leader to learn from than Congressman John Lewis.
In Across That Bridge, Congressman Lewis draws from his experience as a leader of the Civil Rights Movement to offer timeless guidance to anyone seeking to live virtuously and transform the world. His wisdom, poignant recollections, and powerful ideas will inspire a new generation to usher in a freer, more peaceful society. The Civil Rights Movement gave rise to the protest culture we know today, and the experiences of leaders like Congressman Lewis have never been more relevant.
Now featuring an updated introduction from the author addressing the current administration, Across that Bridge offers a strong and moral voice to guide our nation through an era of great uncertainty.
"The most important lesson I have learned in the fifty years I have spent working toward the building of a better world is that the true work of social transformation starts within. It begins inside your own heart and mind, because the battleground of human transformation is really, more than any other thing, the struggle within the human consciousness to believe and accept what is true. Thus to truly revolutionize our society, we must first revolutionize ourselves. We must be the change we seek if we are to effectively demand transformation from others." ---John Lewis in Across That Bridge
Faith, patience, truth, love, peace, study, and reconciliation: these are the buckets into which Lewis pours his message about "the inner transformation that must be realized to effect lasting social change." A civil rights pioneer and Georgia congressman, Lewis (Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of a Movement) seeks to inspire nonviolent activism in a time that he regards as the most violent in history. For his audience, Lewis targets Occupy protestors, and members of the movement will draw lessons from the anecdotes that are the heart of the book. At its best, the book provides a testament to the power of nonviolence in social movements, with moving personal accounts of the Freedom Rides, such as when Lewis describes being physically beaten in South Carolina or sitting out a 40-day sentence in the unrelenting Parchman Farm prison in Mississippi. At its worst, it resembles an extended campaign speech: "Some people have told me that I am a rare bird in the blue sky of dreamers... despite every attempt to keep me down, I have not been shaken." In between these extremes is the advice of a wise uncle who has earned the right to say his peace.