Black Like Me

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Penguin, 1961 - Biography & Autobiography - 192 pages
634 Reviews
The Deep South of the late 1950's was another country: a land of lynchings, segregated lunch counters, whites-only restrooms, and a color line etched in blood across Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. White journalist John Howard Griffin, working for the black-owned magazine Sepia, decided to cross that line. Using medication that darkened his skin to deep brown, he exchanged his privileged life as a southern white man for the disenfranchised world of an unemployed black man. What happened to John Howard Griffin--from the outside and within himself--as he made his way through the segregated Deep South is recorded in this searing work of nonfiction. Educated and soft-spoken, John Howard Griffin changed only the color of his skin. It was enough to make him hated...enough to nearly get him killed. His audacious, still chillingly relevant eyewitness history is a work about race and humanity every American should read.

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Eye opening and educational. - Goodreads
Prose is weak but the book remains a classic. - Goodreads
This book was an excellent book, its a page turner. - Goodreads
Incredible insight to the feelings of the time. - Goodreads
Amazing insight to the plight of the African American. - Goodreads
Excellent non-fiction writing. - Goodreads

Review: Black Like Me

User Review  - Joan Fisher - Goodreads

Phenomenal for its time. Unbelievable that an individual would risk unknown consequences of taken medication to change his skin pigmentation so he could experience what it was like to be the underdog. Read full review

Review: Black Like Me

User Review  - Katie Wilson - Goodreads

This kind of social experiment would never fly today, but it's interesting to read. This book not only sheds light on the Black experience in America during the 1960s, but also White perceptions of ... Read full review

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Section 13

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About the author (1961)

John Howard Griffin (1920-1980) is known internationally as the author of two novels, Nuni and The Devil Rides Outside, five books and monographs on racism in addition to Black Like Me, a biography of Thomas Merton, three collections of photography, a volume of journals, two historical works on Texas, a musicological study, and The John Howard Reader. Born in Dallas, Texas, and educated in France, he served in the U.S. Air Force in the South Pacific, where an injury he received during a Japanese bombardment eventually resulted in the complete loss of his sight. In the 1950's he converted to Catholicism, married, and raised a family. In 1957, (after ten years of blindness) he miraculously regained his sight.

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