Presentation: Barack Obama Dreams from My Father

Category: Barack Obama, Father
Last Updated: 13 Feb 2021
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“Dreams From My Father-A Story of Race and Heritance”

Today I want to introduce you United States President Barack Obama’s first memoir, dreams from my father. It was first published in July 1995 as he was preparing to launch his political career and republished in August 2004. Author: Since my book is an autobiography I won’t tell you everything about the author, I just will give some personal facts about him. Barack Obama was born in 1961 in Honolulu, Hawaii to Barack Obama Senior and Ann Dunham. In 1991, Obama graduated from Harvard Law School.

While in law school he worked as a co-worker at the law firms of Sidley & Austin where he met his wife, Michelle, whom he married in 1992. Barack and Michelle Obama have two daughters: Malia Ann and Natasha, known as Sasha. On November 4 2008, Obama won the presidency of the United States. The inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President took place on January 20, 2009. On October 8 of last year, Obama was named the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

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Paternal Family The Obamas are members of the Luo, Kenya's third-largest ethnic group. Hussein Onyango Obama Barack Obama's paternal grandfatherHabiba Akumu Obama Barack Obama's paternal grandmother and the second wife of Hussein Onyango ObamaBarack Hussein Obama Senior He is the father of Barack Obama. Visited his son only for one single time. In his memoir, Barack calls him the Old Man. KeziaJane Her sister, Jane, is the 'Auntie Jane' mentioned at the very start of Dreams from My Father when she telephoned President Obama to inform him that his father had been killed in a car accident.Ruth Ndesandjo

Born Ruth Nidesand, in US, Barack Obama Sr. 's third wife Maternal Family •Ann Dunham Mother of Barack Obama. His mother is open minded, idealistic, naive in one sense, world-wise in another.Stanley Dunham is the grandfather of Barack Obama. Stanley and his wife Madelyn raised Obama in Honolulu, Hawaii. His grandparents love him unconditionally. He learns his grandfather's strengths and weaknesses, but never really comes to see him as the father figure he's seeking. •Madelyn Lee Payne Dunham Barack Obama's maternal grandmother.Lolo Soetoro

Stepfather of Barack Obama, born in Indonesia, Obama speaks fondly of his step-father, and learns several life lessons from him, but unfortunately his mother's relationship with his step-father doesn't last.


  1. Origins
  2. Chicago
  3. Kenya


Barack Obama, the current narrates a heart-rending story about his personal implications; tribulations in the American society, and his father’s roots. Ad 1. The story opens up in New York, where he hears that his father—a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man—has died in a car accident.

Two years later after Baby Obama was born, his father won a scholarship to continue with studies at Harvard University. And so, Obama Senior left Hawaii, went to Harvard, separated from his small family and, was divorced by Ann. He completed his studies and returned to Kenya to take up a senior job at the department of national planning. Baby Obama never saw him until much later. As a young boy, his mother marries a man from Indonesia and they go to live there. His mother sends him back to Hawaii to live with his grandparents so he can attend a prestigious Hawaiian school, as one of only three black students there.

Obama has one encounter with his father when he's ten in Hawaii. Obama is a little adored, a little overwhelmed by his father’s visit. Nevertheless his father doesn’t stay very long and leaves Obama with more questions than answers. Ad 2. Propelled by a desire to understand both the forces that shaped him and his father’s legacy, the book then moves on to moves to Chicago where he works as a community organizer. It's challenging work that is rarely rewarding, but Obama gives it his all. Then a relative from Kenya, his aunt Jane, calls to tell him his father has died, but Obama's not quite sure how to feel about that or how to react.

Several weeks later, his Kenyan half-sister, Auma, makes contact with him. Auma gives him a sneak peek into his father's life in Kenya. Obama is fascinated by the life Auma leads and wants to learn more about their father. Before he leaves community organizing to go to Harvard Law School, he makes arrangements to visit Auma in Kenya and TO TRACE THE ROOTS OF HIS FATHER. Ad 3. In Kenya, Obama discovers a family he didn't even know. His father had at least four wives, and Obama has a slew of brothers and sisters who are living in their father's shadow.

Obama and Auma visit with one their grandfather's wives, "Granny. " She tells Obama's father story to him. The story: Because Onyango wanted his son to be provided as best as possible as for opening up a good future, his father received a scholarship in economics through a special program which offered Western educational opportunities to outstanding Kenyan students. Following Obama Sr. enrolled at the University of Hawaii where Obama Sr. married Ann Dunham, though she would not find out that her new husband was already married to a pregnant wife until much later.

Ann quit her studies to care for the baby, while Obama Sr. completed his degree, leaving shortly thereafter to study at Harvard University. While studying at Harvard, Obama Sr. met an American-born teacher named Ruth who he married after divorcing from Barack’s mother. After a while Obama Sr. published a paper entitled "Problems Facing Our Socialism" harshly criticizing the concept for national planning. This conflict with President Kenyatta destroyed his career. Following he was fired from his job, was blacklisted in Kenya, and began to drink.

He had a serious car accident, spent almost a year in the hospital, and by the time he visited his son in Hawaii, when Barack was ten years old. Obama Sr. 's life fell into drinking and poverty, from which he never recovered. Obama Sr. later lost both legs in another automobile collision, and subsequently lost his job. He died at the age of 46, in a third car crash in Nairobi. From then on, Obama realized that the man he thought to be a failure was in fact a hero in his village. His father was the first person to have gone to the US University from his village.

Then, Obama forgave his father and decided to change his life basing on his father’s dreams.


Racism Throughout the whole book the main character is faced with Racism. From early childhood he had to struggle with students that teased him when he was playing with one of the three black kids. Even in Kenya, when he and some of his family members are at a restaurant, the waitress who is black, ignores their orders and doesn’t serve them after she has seen European tourists who are white.

Search for community As a young adult, Obama set off in search of community and purpose, with the reat role models of the civil rights movement. The glory days of the civil rights movement were long gone when Obama gets an organizing job in a poor neighborhood on Chicago's South Side plagued by crumbling public housing, disappearing manufacturing jobs, and rising crime. The group's founder is a Jewish man who is not fully trusted by the community. At the same time Obama makes personal connections. He becomes close with the three middle-aged African-American women who are core to the organization, and develops a friendship with an eccentric, pot-smoking Catholic organizer.

He looks out for Kyle, the teenage son of a volunteer who is in danger of getting into trouble. One of the most moving bits in the book where Obama tells the group he is headed off to Harvard Law School, and promises his friends in the neighborhood that he'll be back.

Search for family and identity Feeling out of place in high school, Obama gravitates toward the black kids and works to embrace an African-American culture that matches others' expectations of his appearance, but is different from his upbringing and background. A trip to Kenya before law school is an opportunity for discovery.

Obama grew up with an idealized vision of his father, which both intimidated and inspired him. As he gets to know his African family, he finds out that his father's life was more complex and less perfect than the idealized image. In Kenya, Barack Junior finds a family that is loving, close, and welcoming but surrounded by problems -- feuds, alcoholism, and poverty. The stories that Obama hears on his trip make things more complicated, not simpler. The stories provide context for the personality flaws, passions, that which are more meaningful, more admirable, and more forgivable, than a shallow but false idealized image.

The Limits of "Organizing" After a series of infamous defeats, the persistence, skill and empathy of Obama's group begins to pay off. They organize cleanup for the housing project, job training for the neighborhood, mentoring for school kids. But in the end, during a public forum where the neighborhood people demand basic maintenance for public housing projects, the bureaucrats explain that the Housing Authority budget allows a asbestos removal, or basic repairs, but not both. So as you can see, one small person can’t change everything without reaching some limits.

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Presentation: Barack Obama Dreams from My Father. (2017, Jan 29). Retrieved from

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