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March 13, 1994|CHARLES SOLOMON

TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES by June Jordan (Vintage: $12; 234 pp.). A noted African American journalist and poet, Jordan lashes out at what she perceives as the evils of world in these fiery essays. She derides Ronald Reagan as "a Lady Clairol Cowboy" who defied the International Court of Justice to persecute the people of Nicaragua, defends Anita Hill and dismisses Clarence Thomas as beneath contempt. She praises Martin Luther King Jr., rejecting well-intentioned efforts to deify him, and enthusiastically endorses Jesse Jackson's presidential campaign. Although Jordan occasionally gets carried away by her own rhetoric, her passionate stance offers a welcome counter to the current tendencies to temporize and govern by poll results.

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