Although the writing was a bit dry at times, I found this book to be an excellent source of information and anaylsis during my study of African American history as an undergraduate. The author leans strongly towards the left in his understanding of this period of history, but his mastery of his material makes the book worth reading whatever one's politics may be. The book definitely is not for the uninitiated nor anyone squeamish about discussing the defects of American democracy as it has applied to people of African descent.
The part of the book that stood out most to me is the chapter on the Cold War's effect on black America and how it caused a split in the struggle for civil rights between the more radical contingent as personified by W.E.B. Du Bois and Paul Robenson who were blacklisted from the movement and those like Roy Wilkins of the NAACP who accomodated their efforts to fit into the anti-Communist liberalism demanded by the establishment. According to Marable the effect of the Cold War on civil rights both stagnated the push for racial equality in the 1940s and 1950s, delaying the fall of Jim Crow for more than a decade, and laid the ground for the rift that opened up in the movement later in the 60s. This book comes highly recommended for anyone studying race and politics during the latter half of the twentieth century.