Black Like Me Book Review #4
John Howard Griffin, the author of Black Like Me, writes an autobiographical account what he passed through for a period of about 10 months. Howard has an idea that has been haunting him for a long duration of time; he wondered the various kinds of life changes that a white man would need to be labeled a Negro in the southern region of the United States. Howard wanted to acquire first hand information of the daily experiences of the African Americans in the Deep South. Black Like Me offers an account of the bad and good things that Howard went through because of the vivid makeover from being white to being black. This paper reviews John Howard Griffin’s Black like me, the paper provides a summary of the book, a critique that assesses the strengths and weakness of the book and a discussion of at least three incidents found personally interesting and an identification of what they illuminated concerning the way prejudice and discrimination were both overt and covert during the Jim Crow era. The theme of Black Like Me draws significantly from autobiographical memoirs of the real experiences of the author. This forms the strength of the book and helps in portraying a realistic approach to the question of identity as it is influenced by racial orientations. The quest of the author to pioneer for social justice resulted to a transformation of his race from white to black. Griffin did this because he wanted to give a firsthand account of the prejudice that African Americans in the southern states were facing. As the adventure progresses, it is arguably Griffins began to lose knowledge of himself prior to the racial transformation. The extraordinary racial transformation is also a notable strength of the book, which helps in portraying the significance of race as a determinant of identity. Through racial transformation and first account basis, black like me turns out successful on revealing the prejudice that the African American in the...
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