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Paul Gaston Editorial Remembers Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star recently ran an op-ed piece, written by NewSouth author and historian Paul Gaston, honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and discussing his lasting influence on race relations and politics in the United States.

Gaston fondly recalls memories of meeting King while a professor at the University of Virginia over forty years ago, but focuses also on what he considers the modern misinterpretations by right-wing America of King’s radical message, as well as its assault on civil rights over the last generation.

From the article:

“King’s statement that his ‘dream is deeply rooted in the American dream’ is interpreted to discredit his radicalism; and his hope for the day when people would be judged ‘by the content of their character rather than the color of their skin.’ It is enlisted in the battle against all legislation and programs that might help undo the effects of three and a half centuries of racial exclusion.”

Read the full article at the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star.

Paul Gaston’s life and work has earned him a reputation as one of the most respected southern historians in the country, and his new memoir, Coming of Age in Utopia: The Odyssey of an Idea, chronicles his life as an agent of change from the shores of Mobile Bay, Alabama to the streets and classrooms of Charlottesville and the University of Virginia.

Coming of Age in Utopia is available from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite local or online retailer.