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Book Report - in Contempt by Chris Darden

Essay by   •  August 23, 2011  •  Book/Movie Report  •  1,008 Words (5 Pages)  •  2,179 Views

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The book In Contempt was written by Christopher A. Darden. Chris Darden is famous for being one of the prosecuting attorneys in the court case The People vs. Simpson. He has worked hard his whole life to reach the status he has now achieved. He proved to America that even though he wasn't a high-priced private lawyer that he could present a well-thought out and planned case under the tremendous pressure he and the other prosecutors had to endure during the Simpson case.

I found this book to be very well thought out and well written. Most people would assume that this book was written with the intentions of making a quick-buck off the misfortune of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. I, however, do not believe this to be true. The way that the author speaks of the victims in the book and the way he spoke of them before and after the trial shows that he really cared about the lives of these people that he didn't even know. He even went as far as to say in the book that this was the first case that affected him personally and emotionally.

As one may expect, the majority of this book is taken up with the Simpson case. Chapters two through six detail his life from birth, his childhood in a working class district of Richmond, California and his becoming a district attorney of Los Angeles in 1981. Chapters two and three mostly consist of stories of him and his brother, Michael, stealing from local stores or his brothers' drug deals. When Michael hit his mid-teens he started selling marijuana off the front porch of the house and Chris was his lookout. In return, he was told that he would be cut in on the action but never was. No matter what, Michael always told Chris never to use drugs. Throughout the book Chris Darden refers to his brother as a good role model for him no matter what he did.

I feel the purpose of Chris Darden writing this book is to try to show the hardships he had to go through as a black man trying to become a lawyer. Also I feel that he is trying to reveal the truth behind what was happening in the Simpson case.

This book is funny and at other times the mood is more serious. The few chapters in the beginning were the funny ones. In these chapters he writes about his childhood and works his way forward to when he starts to work in the District Attorney's Office. Specifically he tells about how he was caught stealing a Hostess Fruit pie at the corner store, sneaking crackers from his house pantry, and being teased about having false teeth as a child. As he writes and talks about when he gets older the mood changes and gets more serious.

He writes a lot about his brother who was a big influence on him when he was young. Darden retells stories of how he and his brother, Michael, would salvage old, broken radios from the trash and repair them and then sit on Saturday nights listening to the local R and B station. His brother would

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