Picture of author.

Marian Anderson (1897–1993)

Teoksen My Lord, What a Morning: An Autobiography tekijä

29+ teosta 176 jäsentä 4 arvostelua 1 Favorited

Tietoja tekijästä

Marian Anderson was born in Philadelphia. She studied with Giuseppe Boghette and Frank La Forge. An African American contralto, Anderson had successfully performed throughout Europe before ecstatic audiences, yet was refused permission by the Daughters of the American Revolution to sing at näytä lisää Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., in 1939. The following Easter Sunday, she sang before hundreds at the Lincoln Memorial. In 1955 she became the first African American to perform at the Metropolitan Opera, singing as Ulrica in Un Ballo in Maschera. She received many honors, including the American Freedom Medal. She is admired for her artistic integrity. (Bowker Author Biography) näytä vähemmän

Sisältää myös: Marion Anderson (3)

Image credit: Marian Anderson (1897-1993) Photograph by Carl Van Vechten, Jan. 14, 1940. (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)

Tekijän teokset

My Lord, What a Morning: An Autobiography (1956) 131 kappaletta, 4 arvostelua
Spirituals [CD] 6 kappaletta
Marian Anderson (1990) 6 kappaletta
Portraits in Memory (1993) 1 kappale
set 1 kappale

Associated Works

Merkitty avainsanalla




My Lord, What a Woman!
Published in 1956. Difficult to remember just how segregated the south, our country, the world was at that time.
Immense admiration for this artist who conducted herself without prejudice for the bigots of the world and so graciously conducted herself.
Enjoy seeing her perform on occasion on "Classic Arts Showcase" cable channel.
Recommended reading.
Merkitty asiattomaksi
CasaBooks | 3 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Apr 28, 2013 |
I'm a little conflicted about writing a review of Marian Anderson's My Lord, What a Morning. I feel like I should give it five stars just because it contains words written by a beautiful person who did much for others, and by being her humble self opened doors for many others. It is an amazing book just because it preserves the words of an amazing person. That said though, the written word wasn't the way Marian Anderson communicated best with the world. She communicated best with her voice, and not even her recorded voice. She communicated best to a live audience. Her time has past, and we will never be able to see her at her best again.

That said, don't read My Lord, What a Morning because you want to know important facts about Marian Anderson. Portions of this book were written for a women's magazine. It was intended for an audience that didn't want to know what it was like to run into barriers because of race. They wanted to know how she grew up, what she liked to eat and where she met her husband. Dates, like her date of birth, are left out of her autobiography. We have a few historic markers such as references to soldiers, but not many. When she writes about Europe, it is hard to know if she is talking about pre-World War II or post-World War II. In other words, the telling of her life is light on context because her contemporaries would have known all those details. The book wasn't written with the next generation in mind, let alone the next several generations. Marian Anderson, as a historical figure, is surely more clear in other books.

As a memoir, this isn't a page turner. She clearly didn't make up events as in the infamous memoir A Million Little Pieces. She was a humble, private person. Yes, she overcame many obstacles to become a great singer. Obstacles is what creates tension in a memoir. Tension is what makes books exciting. However, humble Marian was too polite to dramatize her life. She didn't like to dwell on bad things. She mentions a woman who was horribly rude to her when she went to apply at a white-only music school, but she only spends a few paragraphs on it. If I remember right, she even let the woman off the hook slightly by saying she was doing her job. She doesn't name the school. She doesn't hold a grudge. As a reader, we want enemies. As someone with diplomacy, Marion didn't want enemies. Anderson clearly loved her mother very much, and when these things happened, she talked to her mother until she could find a way to cope with racism, self-doubt, or whatever obstacle you could name. What I really would have loved to read were those conversations with her mother. Clearly though, only those closest to Anderson ever saw her as anything other than her best.

So, as a biography and as a memoir, this book isn't great. Maybe it even fails. It did, however, have it's own charm. I read it a few chapters a day, and it was soothing. She has a sharp wit, and an eye for people. She describes segregation on the trains, and then describes a day when one train was carrying the passengers meant for two. There were too many passengers to enforce the usual segregation. She describes whites and blacks having everyday conversations, whites and blacks sharing food, women helping other women with children with no regard to race, and she ends with the simple words "The world did not crumble." This is how she faced racism, as though it was beneath her dignity to get upset over it. Her way to fight was by being the most giving, most polite person she could be. She was always conscious of others. As I read these personal stories, I began feeling as though I was talking to a good friend before bedtime.

But to say she is just a friend is to underestimate her. She lived through a time when racism was raw and accepted. It still exists. I've seen it of course. We all have. But not in the way she saw it. As simple and quiet as the book seems, she finishes it off with these deceptively simple words: There are many persons ready to do what is right because in their hearts they know it is right. But they hesitate, waiting for the other fellow to make the first move--and he, in turn, waits for you. The minute a person whose word means a great deal dares to take the open-hearted and courageous way, many others follow. Not everyone can be turned aside from meanness and hatred, but the great majority of Americans is heading in that direction. I have a great belief in the future of my people and my country.
… (lisätietoja)
2 ääni
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cammykitty | 3 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Mar 3, 2011 |
I really enjoyed this autobiography by the famous contralto who was the first African American singer to be a member of the Metropolitan Opera Company. She is perhaps most famous in the minds of some Americans for her Lincoln Memoiral concert on Easter Sunday of 1939, after the DAR refused to allow a "Negro" to sing in Constitution Hall.

One weakness (and I saw that another LT member mentioned it) was the lack of dates. Occasionally she would mention the year something happened, but it was difficult to really know when in time certain things were happening. That is a small quibble. I found her writing easy to read, and I enjoyed her writing "voice" almost as much as the recordings I've heard of her singing voice. In light of her great talent, I appreciated her humility -- I mean humility in the healthy sense that she could see her own limitations as well as her significant talents, not the unhealthy kind of humility of feeling inferior to anyone.

It was sad to see the prejudice she had to face, but inspiring to see that she did not give up and managed to achieve a great measure of success
… (lisätietoja)
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tymfos | 3 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Feb 14, 2011 |
I read this book back in high school. It was required reading for my english class.
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benitastrnad | 3 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Dec 2, 2010 |


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