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Rosemary Bray


Rosemary Bray

The New York Times Book Reviewand the author of a children's book, Martin Luther King. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and two children.

Those are the surface facts. But one of the benefits of memoir is that we know much more about her, too. From her own words, we see that Bray is: 

Proud: "I was black, I was a girl, I was smart, I was the oldest of four: these were the things I knew about myself..."

Funny: "When I listen to one of the periodic television spectacles on [welfare] reform--in which people...take out after welfare recipients for buying steaks--I have to laugh. Not one of them could survive a week on what my mother raised four children on every month.... And steak was not part of that equation. Even if it were, is that what welfare reform is after--keeping cheap, tough steaks out of the mouths of the unworthy?"

Pragmatic: "I wasn't so angry about white people during slavery, as I was angry about white people here and now."

Honest: "I didn't plan to become a thief, but I became one just the same."

Understanding: "It was hard in such a moment not to remember my father, a man filled with a rage he had every right to feel, but which destroyed him just the same."

Wise: "I could admit in the quiet dark...that my dreams of Mama's new life were my dreams, not hers."

Hopeful: "For all the sweeping xenophobia, the reinvigorated racism, the deepening scorn for women and women's work--including and especially mothering--I see and know and live amid pockets of resistance."  

Rosemary Bray

Books by Rosemary Bray