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Strong Voices
Cover of Strong Voices
Strong Voices
Fifteen American Speeches Worth Knowing
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"A wide-ranging collection of speeches and a worthwhile resource for students of American history." —Booklist

"A golden celebration of the multicultural voices who demand the U.S.—and the world—do better." —Kirkus

"An important addition to American history collections." School Library Journal

Strong Voices: Fifteen American Speeches Worth Knowing is a collection of significant speeches, made both by those who held the reins of power and those who didn't, at significant times in American history. Read the original words—sometimes abridged and sometimes in their entirety—that have shaped our cultural fabric.

Introductions by acclaimed writer Tonya Bolden provide historical context and critical insights to the meaning and impact of every speech. Illustrations by award-winning artist Eric Velasquez illuminate what it was really like at each moment in history. This collection includes the following:

  • Patrick Henry, "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death"
  • George Washington, Farewell Address
  • Red Jacket, "We Never Quarrel about Religion"
  • Frederick Douglass, "What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?"
  • Sojourner Truth, "I Am a Woman's Rights"
  • Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address
  • Theodore Roosevelt, "Citizenship in a Republic"
  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt, "The Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself"
  • Lou Gehrig, "Farewell to Baseball"
  • Langston Hughes, "On the Blacklist All Our Lives"
  • John Fitzgerald Kennedy, "We Choose to Go to the Moon"
  • Martin Luther King, Jr., "I Have a Dream"
  • Fannie Lou Hamer, "I Question America"
  • Cesar Chavez, Address to the Commonwealth Club of California, 1984
  • Hillary Rodham Clinton, "Women's Rights Are Human Rights"
  • Strong Voices includes a foreword by #1 New York Times bestselling author and celebrated journalist Cokie Roberts, as well as a timeline in the back of the book, along with letters to the reader from Tonya Bolden and Eric Velasquez.

    Strong Voices is a tremendous introduction to the extraordinary words spoken in history.

    Supplemental enhancement PDF accompanies the audiobook.

    "A wide-ranging collection of speeches and a worthwhile resource for students of American history." —Booklist

    "A golden celebration of the multicultural voices who demand the U.S.—and the world—do better." —Kirkus

    "An important addition to American history collections." School Library Journal

    Strong Voices: Fifteen American Speeches Worth Knowing is a collection of significant speeches, made both by those who held the reins of power and those who didn't, at significant times in American history. Read the original words—sometimes abridged and sometimes in their entirety—that have shaped our cultural fabric.

    Introductions by acclaimed writer Tonya Bolden provide historical context and critical insights to the meaning and impact of every speech. Illustrations by award-winning artist Eric Velasquez illuminate what it was really like at each moment in history. This collection includes the following:

  • Patrick Henry, "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death"
  • George Washington, Farewell Address
  • Red Jacket, "We Never Quarrel about Religion"
  • Frederick Douglass, "What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?"
  • Sojourner Truth, "I Am a Woman's Rights"
  • Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address
  • Theodore Roosevelt, "Citizenship in a Republic"
  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt, "The Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself"
  • Lou Gehrig, "Farewell to Baseball"
  • Langston Hughes, "On the Blacklist All Our Lives"
  • John Fitzgerald Kennedy, "We Choose to Go to the Moon"
  • Martin Luther King, Jr., "I Have a Dream"
  • Fannie Lou Hamer, "I Question America"
  • Cesar Chavez, Address to the Commonwealth Club of California, 1984
  • Hillary Rodham Clinton, "Women's Rights Are Human Rights"
  • Strong Voices includes a foreword by #1 New York Times bestselling author and celebrated journalist Cokie Roberts, as well as a timeline in the back of the book, along with letters to the reader from Tonya Bolden and Eric Velasquez.

    Strong Voices is a tremendous introduction to the extraordinary words spoken in history.

    Supplemental enhancement PDF accompanies the audiobook.

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    About the Author-
    • Tonya Bolden's books have earned much praise and numerous starred reviews. Her work has been recognized with the NCTE Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children and the Carter G. Woodson Book Award and listed as a CBC/NCSS Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People. She is also the recipient of the Children's Book Guild of Washington, DC's Nonfiction Award for her body of work. Her Maritcha: A Nineteenth-Century American Girl was a Coretta Scott King Author Honor book. Visit her website at www.tonyaboldenbooks.com.

    Reviews-
    • Kirkus

      Starred review from October 15, 2019
      As the subtitle indicates, 15 landmark American speeches, each preceded by an introduction from Bolden that directly conveys needed history to the under-12 set. This collection treats readers not only to well-known oratory, such as Dr. Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream," Frederick Douglass' "What, to the Slave, Is the Fourth of July," and Sojourner Truth's "Ain't I a Woman" (rendered here in standard English as "I Am a Woman's Rights"), but also to some that are not as famous but still a necessary part of the discourse about what the American experiment meant and still means to different people affected by it. Seneca chief Red Jacket's explanation to white American missionary Jacob Cram that "we do not wish to destroy your religion, or take it from you; we only wish to enjoy our own" is powerfully resonant today, for instance. What separates this collection from other anthologies that celebrate spoken patriotism is the way Bolden gives readers a critical historical context--explaining, for example, that Patrick Henry was enslaving black people even as he fiercely opposed Britain's enslaving the white colonists with unreasonable taxes. Velasquez contributes luminous oil portraits, rather disappointingly portraying Truth as an angry black woman but otherwise ably giving strong faces to these strong voices. A golden celebration of the multicultural voices who demand that the U.S.--and the world--do better. (author's note, illustrator's note, timeline, sources, permissions) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

      COPYRIGHT(2019) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

    • School Library Journal

      February 28, 2020

      Gr 3-6-From Patrick Henry's famous "Liberty or Death" speech in 1775 to Hillary Rodham Clinton's groundbreaking 1995 speech on women's rights, readers are exposed to pivotal moments in American history. Many are familiar but other lesser-known speeches are included, such as Native American chief Red Jacket's "We Never Quarrel About Religion," and Fannie Lou Hamer's testimony in front of the Democratic National Convention in 1964. The strength of this compilation lies in the fact that each speech is preceded by a brief biography of the speaker and an introduction by Bolden that provides a historical perspective. The publishers explain that all efforts were made to represent the speeches as accurately as possible and with minimal editing on their part. However, some of the speeches were not written down by the speaker at the time the speech was given, so there may have been a slight variance in what listeners recalled. Some of the more recent speeches can be accessed on YouTube. Velasquez's vibrant oil on watercolor paper art utilizes full-page, realistic images of each speaker delivering their speech. Colorful, bubble-like circles edge the pages, providing visual coherence throughout. A time line at the back places each speech along the 220-year span they represent, along with other important events in America. There is a foreword by the late NPR reporter Cokie Roberts, but the text does not explain who she was, a lost opportunity to recognize her expertise and why she would have been asked to contribute. VERDICT An important addition to American history collections.-Maggie Chase, Boise State University, ID

      Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

    • AudioFile Magazine Although it's aimed at middle-grade listeners, this collection of important American speeches is enlightening for those of all ages. In the introductions, narrator Lisa Renee Pitts's spirited voice delivers the historical contexts and legacies of the speeches, unflinchingly detailing which Founding Fathers were slaveholders and explaining complicated politics. Pitts also delivers the three speeches by women with a fiery passion; Fannie Lou Hamer's speech is especially moving. The other 12 speeches are delivered in Prentice Onayemi's resonant, authoritative voice. His subtle accents authentically bring to life a diverse group of speakers, including Abraham Lincoln, Lou Gherig, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Cesar Chavez. An accompanying pdf provides a color-coded timeline of America, beginning with the Revolution and dotted with thumbnail portraits of the orators. S.T.C. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award � AudioFile 2020, Portland, Maine
    • Publisher's Weekly

      May 18, 2020
      “Listen then to the people who created this country, kept it from disunion, and brought more of its citizens into the fullness of their rights,” invites the foreword (by late journalist Cokie Roberts) of this inspirational collection of speeches. Spanning more than 200 years of U.S. history, from Patrick Henry’s 1775 “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!” speech to Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 1995 “Women’s Rights Are Human Rights,” most of the orations were fervent pleas for social change and equal rights on behalf of marginalized groups, including African-Americans (Frederick Douglass), women (Sojourner Truth), and migrant farm laborers (César Chavez). Other inclusions, like President Franklin Roosevelt’s, aimed to embolden citizens during difficult socioeconomic times. Velasquez (Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library) provides a striking full-color oil portrait of each orator, preceding the compendium’s true value: Bolden’s (Maritcha: A Nineteenth-Century American Girl) contextualization. Bordered by colorful concentric speech bubbles and circles, prologues by Bolden anchor each speech within a historical framework and offer biographical details (e.g., Sojourner Truth renamed herself after escaping from enslavement). A wending timeline concludes this resource, which will resonate with its themes of social justice, political discord, and courage. Ages 8–up.

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    Fifteen American Speeches Worth Knowing
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