In Pillar of Fire, the second volume of his America in the King Years trilogy, Taylor Branch portrays the civil rights era at its zenith, picking up where the Pulitzer Prize-winning Parting the Waters left off. It is a monumental chronicle of a movement that stirred from Southern black churches to challenge the national conscience during the Eisenhower and Kennedy years. In this masterly continuation of the narrative, Branch recounts the climactic struggles as they commanded the national and international stage.
This audio adaptation of Pillar of Fire covers the upheavals of the years 1963-1965 -- Dallas, Mississippi Freedom Summer, the far-reaching effects of civil rights legislation, the violent reaction to the end of legalized segregation, Vietnam, Selma. And it provides frank, revealing portraits of the major players: LBJ, Malcolm X, Bob Moses, Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., and others. Participants on all sides stretched themselves and their country to the breaking point over the meaning to simple words: dignity, equal votes, equal souls.
Taylor Branch is the bestselling author of Parting the Waters: America in the King Years, 1954-63; Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65; At Canaan’s Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-1968; and The Clinton Tapes. He has won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.