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The Enigma of Clarence Thomas Reviews

The Enigma of Clarence Thomas by Corey Robin

The Enigma of Clarence Thomas

Corey Robin

Score pending

1 review

Imprint: Henry Holt & Company Inc
Publisher: Henry Holt & Company Inc
Publication date: 24 Sep 2019
ISBN: 9781627793834
4 stars out of 5
Frances Wilson
28 Dec 2019

"After reading this bold and original book, Thomas appears less of an enigma than a paradox hiding in plain sight."

 Like all the best biographies The Enigma of Clarence Thomas aims to reveal the inner workings of its subject, and Robin achieves this not by trawling through Thomas’s private life and talking to his colleagues but by anatomising his 700 authored opinions, including those on abortion, gun rights and campaign financing. Placing his judicial opinions at the centre of his black nationalism, and his black nationalism at the centre of his identity as a black man, Robin makes what he calls Thomas’s “invisible justice visible”, and in doing so he reveals the invisibility of Thomas himself. Robin takes for his epilogue the words of the unnamed black protagonist in Ralph Ellison’s novel, Invisible Man: “I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.”