The Eyes of Willie McGee - A Tragedy of Race, Sex, and Secrets in the Jim Crow South-logo

The Eyes of Willie McGee - A Tragedy of Race, Sex, and Secrets in the Jim Crow South

Alex Heard

More Information

Genres:

History

Description:

A gripping saga of race and retribution in the Deep South and a story whose haunting details echo the themes of To Kill a Mockingbird In 1945, Willie McGee, a young African-American man from Laurel, Mississippi, was sentenced to death for allegedly raping Willette Hawkins, a white housewife. At first, McGee's case was barely noticed, covered only in hostile Mississippi newspapers and far-left publications such as the Daily Worker. Then Bella Abzug, a young New York labor lawyer, was hired by the Civil Rights Congress-an aggressive civil rights organization with ties to the Communist Party of the United States-to oversee McGee's defense. Together with William Patterson, the son of a slave and a devout believer in the need for revolutionary change, Abzug and a group of white Mississippi lawyers risked their lives to plead McGee's case. After years of court battles, McGee's supporters flooded President Harry S. Truman and the U.S. Supreme Court with clemency pleas, and famous Americans-including William Faulkner, Albert Einstein, Jessica Mitford, Paul Robeson, Norman Mailer, and Josephine Baker-spoke out on McGee's behalf. By the time the case ended in 1951 with McGee's public execution in Mississippi's infamous traveling electric chair, "Free Willie McGee" had become a rallying cry among civil rights activists, progressives, leftists, and Communist Party members. Their movement had succeeded in convincing millions of people worldwide that McGee had been framed and that the real story involved a consensual love affair between him and Mrs. Hawkins-one that she had instigated and controlled. As Heard discovered, this controversial theory is a doorway to a tangle of secrets that spawned a legacy of confusion, misinformation, and pain that still resonates today. The mysteries surrounding McGee's case live on in this provocative tale of justice in the Deep South. Based on exhaustive documentary research-court transcripts, newspaper reports, archived papers, letters, FBI documents, and the recollections of family membe

Language:

English

Narrators:

J.D. Jackson

Length:

14h 1m


Chapters

Free Sample

05:00

Chapter 1
Chapter 1

00:28


Chapter 2
Chapter 2

01:13


Chapter 3
Chapter 3

01:05:56


Chapter 4
Chapter 4

01:07:07


Chapter 5
Chapter 5

01:05:03


Chapter 6
Chapter 6

54:48


Chapter 7
Chapter 7

54:22


Chapter 8
Chapter 8

55:33


Chapter 9
Chapter 9

01:07:01


Chapter 10
Chapter 10

47:41


Chapter 11
Chapter 11

26:05


Chapter 12
Chapter 12

56:12


Chapter 13
Chapter 13

01:08:18


Chapter 14
Chapter 14

57:22


Chapter 15
Chapter 15

01:00:00


Chapter 16
Chapter 16

01:04:55


Chapter 17
Chapter 17

28:57


Chapter 18
Chapter 18

00:46