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Black like Me

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Book Title: Black like Me

Black Like Me by John Howard Griffin took place in 1959 in Mansfield, Texas. The late 1950s is the time period during segregation between whites and blacks. While Mansfield, Texas is not a most important place in the book, it is where John Griffin travels to that is important which would include New Orleans and the Deep South of Mississippi, Alabama, and Atlanta. All four of these locations were very racist towards black people during the 1950s, which is why they are very important locations in this story.

Black Like Me is about a middle aged white man named John Howard Griffin, who is the main character and author of the story. He decides to undergo a medical treatment that will change his skin color to deep brown; he wants to see how it is to live like an unemployed black man in the south. George Levitan, the editor of the black-oriented magazine called "Sepia" funds Griffin experience to become a black man exchange for an article in his magazine. Griffin travels to New Orleans, where he finds a contact named Sterling Williams where he begins doing things to make him look like a black man, exposure to ultraviolet light, oral medication, and skin dyes. Griffin expects to find hardship and prejudice, but he finds it to be even worse. No matter where he goes, he can't find a job or even use the restroom that allows black people. Then he travels to the Deep South of Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. Finally he stops his medication and returns home, to write an article that is published in March 1960. Griffin and his family were hated by white people and were force to move to Mexico.

Black Like Me convey its message very well, people do not understand the hardship African-Americas had to deal with in the late 1950s. This book puts that in prospective; I can't imagine what it took for John Griffin to actually decide to do this. He was putting his life on the line to see how it was to live as a black man in the Deep South. John Griffin did a great job convey his message and letting the reader understand what he had to go through on a daily basis being a black man. The only weakness of the book is that I didn't want to end; he put a lot of things in prospective for me that I never really thought about. This book was written 50 years ago, but things that happen in this book are still going on around the world, even in the United States. While companies and people will not admit being racist and prejudice towards black people, they still hired people based on skin color, age, etc. John Griffin did a great job illustrating what was really going on during segregation during the 1950s in this book. While I believe this book was a great read, I feel the overall story is very illuminating and depressing... How can humans treat each other like this? I will probably never know the answer to that question. I believe the United States has gotten better



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