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Book Review: Black Like Me

Written by John Howard and Reviewed by Polly Guequierre

Sometimes books stay with me long after I have finished reading them. This was one of those books. Written in 1962, sadly it is as relevant today as it was then. The author, a white novelist, began his journey doing a research study of the “Negro” in the Deep South. He found so much more than data during his travels.

He used a medication that darkened his skin in order for him to pass as black. He exchanged his life as a privileged white man to travel the segregated south as a black man.

His experiences from New Orleans to Mobile and Montgomery shook him body and soul, intellectually and emotionally. He was now the target of all the racial hate and injustice that the southern black men endured, then as now. His descriptions are vivid, cruel, and raw, leaving me not only saddened but heart broken. In our current climate of racism, I believe this book is a must-read to even begin to understand the plight of blacks in America.

Check out Black Like Me, and many other books, from the Covenant Library!

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