by Doreen Lawrence - £7.99 Faber & Faber (2007)
paperback ISBN 13: 9780571234592 | ISBN 10: 0571234593
This is the heartbreaking story of a mother's loss. It is also the story of how one ordinary black woman and her husband changed the face of British policing and the criminal justice system.
In April 1993, Stephen Lawrence was murdered by a group of young white men on a street in south-east London. No one was ever convicted of his killing. From the first police investigation onwards, the case was badly mishandled. In the end, long after the case against the five suspects had been dropped, the government had to give in to mounting pressure and hold a public inquiry, which became the most explosive in recent British legal history. Sir William Macpherson concluded that the Metropolitan Police had been 'institutionally racist', and handed out damning judgements of its attitude to the victim and his family.
These facts, though, leave the reader unprepared for Doreen Lawrence's own story of her son's murder. Here, in this raw, honest book, she writes about her life for the first time, and recreates the pain, frustration and bafflement she experienced as she realized that there would never be a moment when she could say to herself that justice had been done. She writes about her difficult childhood in Jamaica. She takes us through the unimaginable events of 1993 and the years that followed as they happened to her. She writes about the breakdown of her marriage, of her terrible moments of withdrawal from the world. But no matter how depressed or marginalized she feels, she keeps her determination to go on fighting for the truth.
An inspirational book from one of the most extraordinary British women of our time, And Still I Rise demands to be read.
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In booklists: Black and Asian Biography and Autobiography, Justice and the Law: Memoirs, Racism in Britain, Anti-Racism, Black British Women, Black British History, Institutional Racism, Miscarriages of Justice, In categories: History & Biography, World - Asia, Black, Asian & Other Diasporas, Society, Welfare, Justice & the State, Anti-Racism, Feminism & Women,