Dreams from My Father is an autobiographical work written by Barack Obama. It was first published in 1995 and republished in 2004 when Obama was elected to the United States Senate.
The protagonist of the work is Barack Hussein Obama Jr, who was born on born August 4, 1961, and served two terms as the 44th president of the United States from 2009 to 2017. This book was published before Obama was elected president and tells of Obama's youth and education leading up to his acceptance to Harvard Law School. In many ways, this is a story of the "American Dream" of a biracial young man, raised by a single mother, who eventually grew up to be an ultimate American success.
Ann Dunham (November 29, 1942–November 7, 1995) was an American anthropologist who was especially focused on the lives and economic roles of women in Indonesia. She was originally from Wichita, Kansas. She was Obama's mother and raised him in Hawaii and Indonesia, and she influenced Obama's interest in social justice, women's issues, and global poverty.
Barack Obama Sr., of Kenya, was Obama's father. He married Ann Dunham in 1961 and separated from her in 1963, which was followed by a 1964 divorce. He was not really present in Obama's childhood, but Obama describes his efforts to imagine and think about his absent father while growing up.
Other important characters in the book include Lolo Soetoro, Obama's stepfather; Obama's maternal grandparents, Madelyn “Toot” Dunham and Stanley “Gramps” Dunham; and Obama's high school friend "Ray" (Keith Kakugawa).