James D(ouglas) Forman Lyla Hoffman - Essay

Lyla Hoffman

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

[Freedom Road, previously titled Freedom's Blood,] is a "fictional reconstruction of the first weekend of that Freedom Summer" in 1964, during which three young civil rights workers were murdered by the Klan and its police allies. Because the occasion is still so vivid to anti-racists over thirty-five …, it is difficult to consider this as any sort of fiction. Michael Schwerner, the principal white character, is fleshed out by the author. James Chaney, the Black in the trio, is somewhat less clearly depicted. Andrew Goodman, the other white who arrived in the South one day before he was murdered, remains a shadowy, peripheral character. The story unfolds with chilling suspense—even for this reader...

(The entire section is 406 words.)