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April 2016 , Page 59 

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Book Review: Showdown - Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court Nomination That Changed America

By Cheryl D. Stein

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Showdown - 
Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court Nomination That Changed America

By Wil Haygood
Knopf (2015)


Shortly after New Year’s Day in 1973, Lyndon Johnson called Thurgood Marshall to say that he was planning to write a book about Marshall’s nomination to the Supreme Court and the bruising confirmation battle that followed. The justice enthusiastically agreed to help with the project. Sadly, their collaboration was not to be. LBJ died on January 22.

Wil Haygood has now undertaken to tell that story. Haygood, a former journalist, has published biographies of Adam Clayton Powell, Sugar Ray Robinson, and Sammy Davis, Jr. The history related in Showdown is of great historical importance and full of larger-than-life characters.

After the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts, Johnson decided that his next step in attacking racial inequality would be the appointment of a black Supreme Court justice. The only impediment was the absence of an op

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