Betty Bobo Pearson (b. 1922), a seventh-generation, plantation-born Mississippian, defied her cultural heritage—and caused great personal pain for her parents and herself—when she became an activist in the civil rights movement. Never fearing to break the mold in her search for the “best,” in her nineties she remains a strong, effective leader with a fun-loving, generous spirit.

“This is the intimate, tell-it-all account of the life and career of one of the most remarkable women whom I have ever known. If Mississippi had had more people of conscience and courage like Betty Bobo Pearson and her friend, Florence Mars, we would have spared ourselves much unnecessary grief in the past, as we struggled with the issue of race. But this intriguing book is not just about race. It is an enlightening and inspiring insight into the character and values of one who was always true to herself and, as a result, to everyone else.”

—William Winter

“This is a wonderful book and a fitting tribute to a rare human being who rose far above her heritage to repeatedly do the right thing in the race-torn Mississippi of the last half of the twentieth century. If you were a white Mississippian and fortunate enough to know Betty, her example was irrefutable evidence that you weren’t doing enough to advance the day of racial reconciliation and reconstruction. She was quite literally sui generis, which is too bad. A platoon of Betty Pearsons would have sped the state toward a much earlier rendezvous with decency.”

—Hodding Carter III

University Press of Mississppi

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The Irrepressible Betty Bobo Pearson

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