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Reginald Victor Johnson

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Review: Handing One Another Along
by Reginald Victor Johnson   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Saturday, January 22, 2011
Posted: Saturday, January 22, 2011

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Below is my review of Handing One Another Along. Written by Robert Coles, it is about literature and social reflections.

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This is a captivatingly written book!  Handing One Another Along comes from a quote (by Walker Grey) in the book, “Lives of Moral Leadership”,   written by Dr. Coles in 2001.    Many of the stories in this book were introduced in his bestseller,   “Lives We Carry with US:  Profiles of Moral Courage”.  I was able to revisit them and also luxuriate in extra added attractions … that shape the fabric, texture, and warmth of our lives. 


 Emphasis is placed upon three questions:  Where do we come from?  What are we? Where are we going?  Narratives covered in the book, reminded me of shortcomings in my earlier education. While   I memorized  literary contributions,  I  did not fully explore artists’ lives …  and  how they contributed to  my past, present, and potential  future.


 This marvelous book allowed me to focus, with greater understanding, writers that contributed to my enlightenment.  Reading about authors like Tillie Olsen, Ralph Ellison, James Agee, and Nora Neale Hurston … brought tears of joy, empathy, and appreciation, to my eyes. It made me acknowledge the immense freedoms I enjoy,  as well as opportunities … too many of us take for granted. It was fascinating to discover blurry distinctions between their lives and the stories about which they wrote. Oscar Wilde was perceptive when he said: “Life imitates art far more than art imitates life”.


A quote from the book states it is about:  “How literature can help us reflect on a broad range of social issues, and on what it means to find our way as human beings in the world.”  I found my way and encourage you to do the same.



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