Author(s): McNeil D
Abstract: David Remnick is well acquainted with the fallacious argument that Barack Obama’s election signalled the end of racism in America. Responding to “sentimental narratives” about the 44th President of the United State of America, he has drawn on his contacts as editor of The New Yorker and developed a “piece of biographical journalism that, through interviews with his contemporaries and certain historical actors, examined Obama’s life before his Presidency and some of the historical currents that helped to form him” (586). In its 621 pages, The Bridge has room for Obama’s classmates, anecdotes about his family, CliffsNotes on African American autobiography, and American cultural gatekeepers who convey their opinions about race and Obama’s self-fashioning. However, it is unable, or unwilling, to admit activist-intellectuals such as Harold Cruse and Steve Biko, cultural critics who can illuminate Obama’s journey in Black and White as well as his carefully crafted civility.