Alex Haley's grandmother used to tell him stories about their family back through the generations, all the way to a man she called "the African". She said he had lived across the ocean and had been out in the forest one day chopping wood when he was set upon by four men, beaten, chained and dragged aboard a slave ship bound for Colonial America. Haley began to search for documentation that might authenticate the narrative. The result is this two-century drama of Kunta Kinte and the six generations who came after him - slaves and freedmen, farmers and blacksmiths, lumbermill workers and Pullman porters, lawyers and architects - and one author.

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Author Alex Haley
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