Example: [Collected via e-mail, May 2012]
The booklet, which was distributed to "business colleagues" in the publishing industry, includes a brief biography of Obama among the biographies of
Variations: A variant of this item paired the image shown above with the statement "Big Oops! Harvard Law Review did not cleanse its 1991 yearbook which states he was born in Kenya." As noted below, the biographical sketch pictured above was put out by a literacy agency; it was not part of any yearbook published by Harvard.
Origins: In May 2012 the web site Breitbart.com published a copy of a promotional booklet produced in 1991 by the literary agency Acton & Dystel showcasing their roster of writers, among whom was a young man named Barack Obama. This booklet was of particular interest because it included a brief biographical sketch which described the future President as having been born in Kenya:
... [W]e discovered, and now present, the booklet described below — one that includes a marketing pitch for a forthcoming book by a then-young, otherwise unknown former president of the Harvard Law Review.
It is evidence — not of the President's foreign origin, but that Barack Obama's public persona has perhaps been presented differently at different times.
"You're undoubtedly aware of the brouhaha stirred up by Breitbart about the erroneous statement in a client list Acton & Dystel published in 1991 (for circulation within the publishing industry only) that Barack Obama was born in Kenya. This was nothing more than a fact checking error by me — an agency assistant at the time," Goderich wrote. "There was never any information given to us by Obama in any of his correspondence or other communications suggesting in any way that he was born in Kenya and not Hawaii. I hope you can communicate to your readers that this was a simple mistake and nothing more."
Last updated: 10 August 2012
Butterfield, Fox. "First Black Elected to Head Harvard's Law Review." The New York Times. 6 February 1990. Stableford, Dylan. "'Obama's Literary Agent Misidentified His Birthplace in 1991." ABC News. 18 May 2012. Taranto, James. "Counterfeit Kenyan." The Wall Street Journal. 18 May 2012.