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The Sammy Davis, Jr., Reader

by Gerald Lyn Early

  • ISBN: 9780374253837
  • ISBN10: 0374253838

The Sammy Davis, Jr., Reader

by Gerald Lyn Early

  • List Price: $20.00
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Edition: 1
  • Publisher: Farrar Straus & Giroux
  • Publish date: 09/01/2001
  • ISBN: 9780374253837
  • ISBN10: 0374253838
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Description: Introduction by Gerald Early.

The life and times of the last great American hipster.

Sammy Davis, Jr. (1925-90) rose from childhood stardom on the vaudeville stage to become one of the most famous African American entertainers of the 1950s and '60s (and the only black member of Frank Sinatra's Rat Pack). At the same time, he spent most of his career surrounded by controversy and ridicule -- over his affairs with white film stars like Kim Novak and Jean Seberg; his 1960 marriage to Swedish actress May Britt; his conversion to Judaism; his closeness to the Kennedys and, later, Richard Nixon; and his problems with alcohol and drugs.

Davis comes alive in this collection of writings about him, including a 1966 Playboy interview by Alex Haley; an excerpt from the 1983 autobiography of porn star Linda Lovelace; profiles from The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, and The Saturday Evening Post; and articles from many prominent African American periodicals. The Sammy Davis, Jr. Reader is a composite portrait of a complex, self-conscious man and the society that treated him, for more than forty years, with passionate ambivalence.

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