Garrow, David J. 1953–
Garrow, David J. 1953–
(David Jeffries Garrow)
PERSONAL: Born May 11, 1953, in New Bedford, MA; son of Walter J. (in business) and Barbara (Fassett) Garrow; married Susan Foster Newcomer, December 18, 1984. Education: Wesleyan University, B.A. (magna cum laude), 1975; Duke University, M.A., 1978, Ph.D., 1981.
ADDRESSES: Agent—c/o Author Mail, The University of Chicago Press, 1427 E. 60th St., Chicago, IL 60637; fax: 773-702-9756.
CAREER: Historian, educator, and writer. Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, NJ, visiting member, 1979–80; University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, assistant professor of political science, 1980–84; Joint Center for Political Studies, Washington, DC, visiting fellow, 1984; City University of New York, College and the Graduate Center, New York, NY, associate professor, 1984–87, professor of political science, 1987–91; Cooper Union, New York, NY, visiting distinguished professor of history, 1992–93; College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, VA, Harrison professor of history, 1994–95; American University, distinguished historian in residence, 1995–96; Emory University School of Law, presidential distinguished professor, c. 1979–2003.
MEMBER: Author's Guild, Phi Beta Kappa.
AWARDS, HONORS: Pulitzer Prize for biography and Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, both 1987, both for Bearing the Cross; Gustavus Myers Human Rights Book Award, 1987. Also recipient of numerous grants, including grants from the Ford Foundation, 1979–80, Lyndon B. Johnson Foundation, 1979–80, National Endowment for the Humanities, 1984–85, and the Eisenhower World Affairs Institute, 1985–86.
Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Morrow (New York, NY), 1986.
(Editor) The Montgomery Bus Boycott and the Women Who Started it: The Memoir of Jo Ann Gibson Robinson, University of Tennessee Press (Knoxville, TN), 1987.
(Editor) Centers of the Southeastern Struggle, University Publications of America (Frederick, MD), 1988.
(Editor and author of preface) Atlanta, Georgia, 1960–1961: Sit-ins and Student Activism, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
(Editor and author of preface) Birmingham, Alabama, 1956–1963: The Black Struggle for Civil Rights, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
Chicago 1996: Open Housing Marches, Summit Negotiations, and Operations Breadbasket, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
(Editor and author of preface) Martin Luther King, Jr.: Civil Rights Leader, Theologian, Orator, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
(Editor and author of preface) St. Augustine, Florida, 1963–1964: Mass Protest and Racial Violence, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
(Editor and author of preface) Walking City: The Montgomery Bus Boycott, 1955–1956, Carlson (Brooklyn, NY), 1989.
Liberty and Sexuality: The Right to Privacy and the Making of Roe v. Wade, Maxwell Macmillan International (New York, NY), 1994, updated edition with a new epilogue, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 1998
(Editor and author of foreword and afterword, with Dennis J. Hutchinson) The Forgotten Memoir of John Knox: A Year in the Life of a Supreme Court Clerk in FDR's Washington, University of Chicago Press (Chicago, IL), 2002.
Author of introduction to Louis Martin and the Rise of Black Political Power, by Alex Poinsett, Madison, 1997; member of the editorial board for Reporting Civil Rights, Library of America, 2003. Contributor to numerous journals and periodicals, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Dissent, Journal of American History, and Constitutional Commentary.
ADAPTATIONS: Bearing the Cross has been adapted as an audio book, Blackstone Audiobooks, 1998.
SIDELIGHTS: David J. Garrow is a historian of politics with an interest in such areas as American legal history, the Supreme Court, African-American political history and the civil rights movement, and reproductive rights politics. Garrow once told CA: "Protest at Selma: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 began as my undergraduate honors thesis. It argues that Dr. King should be viewed as an insightful and pragmatic political strategist whose foremost goal was winning the enactment of federal civil rights laws, and not simply as the charismatic orator the media have portrayed him as."
According to Social Science Quarterly contributor James Button, Protest at Selma "is a thorough and astute analysis of the crucial role of black protest in the emergence of the revolutionary Voting Rights Act of 1965." Specifically, Garrow examines both the dynamics of protest and what he calls "nonviolent coercion," the tactic "used to induce white southern officials to brutalize black demonstrators and thereby gain publicity and nationwide support for the cause," Button observed. Francis M. Wilhoit, writing in the American Historical Review, wrote that the book "merits high marks for its excellent integration of a wide variety of data into a unified explanation of what contributes to the success or failure of protest appeals in an open society…. The strengths of the work are, in fact, so considerable that the book could well serve as a model of scholarly insight and research design implementation."
In The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr.: From "Solo" to Memphis, the author recounts the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation's secret surveillance of the civil rights leader as well as their ultimate harassment of him. The author details how the FBI garnered the authority in the early 1960s to conduct surveillance on King and then passed on damaging information to political officials, newspapers, and magazines, and even other civil rights leaders in an effort to discredit King. Writing in Time, Jack E. White and Richard Zoglin noted that some of King's admirers and past associates were unhappy about Garrow's book, which reveals the FBI's discovery of King's philandering; but the reviewers went on to write that some approved of the book and regarded the effort as "an unvarnished understanding of the complex man and his struggles with the FBI—and with himself—[that] provides a deeper appreciation of the larger crusade he waged." The reviewers added: "The book does not diminish the heroic nature of his struggle, but instead makes it more real."
Garrow continues his interest in King with the biography titled Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Based on more than 700 interviews of King's colleagues, friends, and enemies, the book focuses primarily on King's leadership of the conference as the basis of his civil rights activities. Writing in the New Republic, David Brion Davis commented that the author "relies on skillful narrative almost devoid of overt analysis, interpretation, or moralizing." Davis also noted that the author "in no way minimizes King's weaknesses" in what Davis called a "monumental biography." Nation contributor William H. Chafe noted that the book represents "a singularly impressive piece of research," adding that "Garrow has greatly enhanced our appreciation of King and his contribution to history." Michael Rogers, writing in the Library Journal, called the biography "definitive and essential."
In his book Liberty and Sexuality: The Right to Privacy and the Making of Roe v. Wade, Garrow focuses on the women and men who played key roles in the legal and political efforts that eventually led to the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 landmark decision to legalize abortion. Among the people profiled are a 1930s Connecticut activist (actress Katherine Hepburn's mother) who defiantly opened birth control clinics, and another Connecticut woman who took her case to the Supreme Court to wipe out her earlier conviction for running the Connecticut Planned Parenthood clinic. Throughout the book, the author details many cases of litigation that contributed to the abortion rights cause. Mary Carroll, writing in Booklist, noted that the author "has an important, largely unacknowledged story to tell." In a review in the Atlantic Monthly, Jeffrey Rosen called the effort an "impressively researched and useful book." New Republic contributor Kathleen M. Sullivan noted that the book should be "valued as an exhaustively researched historical account that enables the patient reader to discern from his raw material both the power and the limits of arguments for reproductive or sexual liberty." James R. Kelley noted in America that the book "is likely to become the indispensable account of how abortion became legal in America."
Garrow also collaborated with Dennis J. Hutchinson as editor of The Forgotten Memoir of John Knox: A Year in the Life of a Supreme Court Clerk in FDR's Washington. The book presents Knox's diary writings covering the time he served as a law clerk in 1936–1937 to Justice James McReynolds and provides an inside look at the reactions of conservative justices to the New Deal legislation passed under President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's administration, as well as an insider's view of McReynolds, who was a known racist and anti-Semite. Writing in the Michigan Law Review, Laura Krugman Ray commented that "the memoir … records a young man's progressive disillusionment with the Justice he serves." New York Times Book Review contributor Adam Clymer called the book "a strangely compelling account of an incomplete voyage of discovery by a lonely, self-absorbed and utterly naïve young man in a world stranger to him than it would seem to any of us."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
America, December 31, 1994, James R. Kelley, review of Liberty and Sexuality: The Right to Privacy and the Making of Roe v. Wade, p. 26.
American Historical Review, June, 1979, Francis M. Wilhoit, review of Protest at Selma: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Atlantic Monthly, April, 1994, Jeffrey Rosen, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 121.
Black Issues in Higher Education, June 27, 1996, Gwendolyn Glenn, "Bringing King to the Classroom," interview with author, p. 12.
Booklist, February 15, 1994, Mary Carroll, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 1036.
Columbia Journalism Review, January-February, 2003, James Boylan, review of Reporting Civil Rights, p. 55.
Human Life Review, summer, 1994, Robert A. Destro, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 28.
Journal of Interdisciplinary History, fall, 1995, Mark V. Tushnet, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 356.
Journal of Social History, spring, 2001, Stanley Cohen, review of The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr.: From "Solo" to Memphis, p. 703.
Lancet, June 18, 1994, Simon Heller, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 1555.
Library Journal, February 15, 2004, Michael Rogers, review of Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, p. 168.
Michigan Law Review, May, 1995, Neal Devins, review of Liberty and Sexuality, pp. 1433-1459; May, 2003, Laura Krugman Ray, review of The Forgotten Memoir of John Knox: A Year in the Life of a Supreme Court Clerk in FDR's Washington, p. 2103.
Nation, February 21, 1987, William H. Chafe, review of Bearing the Cross, p. 221; July 4, 1987, Alexander Cockburn, review of review of Bearing the Cross, p. 9.
National Review, December 23, 1983, Joseph Sobran, review of The FBI and Martin Luther King Jr., p. 1617.
New Republic, January 5, 1987, David Brion Davis, review of Bearing the Cross, p. 34; May 23, 1994, Kathleen M. Sullivan, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 42; August 5, 2002, Jeffrey Rosen, review of The Forgotten Memoir of John Knox, p. 25.
New York Times Book Review, October 6, 2002, Adam Clymer, review of The Forgotten Memoir of John Knox, p. 35.
Progressive, January, 1995, Linda Rocawich, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 44.
Publishers Weekly, January 10, 1994, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 50.
Reviews in American History, December, 1994, Laura Kalman, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 725.
Social Science Quarterly, June, 1979, James Button, review of Protest at Selma.
Society, September-October, 1996, Robert J. McKeever, review of Liberty and Sexuality, p. 81.
Time, January 19, 1987, Jack E. White and Richard Zoglin, review of The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr., p. 24.
"Garrow, David J. 1953–." Contemporary Authors, New Revision Series. . Encyclopedia.com. (January 22, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/educational-magazines/garrow-david-j-1953
"Garrow, David J. 1953–." Contemporary Authors, New Revision Series. . Retrieved January 22, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/educational-magazines/garrow-david-j-1953
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