Black Like Me – Book Report Essay

For the book study. I read the book Black Like Me by John Howard Griffin. The narrative takes topographic point in 1959 and revolves around a white adult male who decides to travel to the Deep South undercover as a black adult male to seek to understand what truly goes on at that place. This adult male. John Griffin. documented his journey from get downing to stop in order to do an attempt to stop racial segregation. For seven hebdomads. he lived and experienced the horrors that a black adult male lived every twenty-four hours during that clip. He rapidly learned that he no longer had the same privileges as he did as a white adult male.

He could no longer travel into any shop he wanted and had to walk stat mis before happening person who would allow him purchase a glass of H2O or to utilize the bathroom. Reading this book. my eyes were opened to all the disadvantages the black adult male faced that I ever heard about in school. but ne’er truly understood. John Griffin moved off from his place and household in Mansfield. Texas to New Orleans. Louisiana to carry on his research. His motive was for racial justness and for his defeat of non understanding the black experience. At this clip. no black adult male in his right head would state a white adult male how atrocious life was for him.

We will write a custom essay sample on
Black Like Me – Book Report Essay
or any similar topic only for you
Order now

Since Griffin was a white adult male. questioning inkinesss would non give him a true image of their life. He decides to travel with the lone manner he will truly happen out what it’s like to be a black in the South ; to alter the colour of his tegument. He went through different medical interventions to carry through this. To alter his tegument colour from white to black. he took pills to darken his tegument. and besides used skin dyes. He so could easy go through through New Orleans’ streets as a ‘Negro’ . He befriended a shoeshine who had been reflecting his exact same places when he was a white adult male.

The shoeshine is delighted with Griffin’s undertaking and opens the life of a black adult male up to him. The shoeshine taught him how to move. talk. and everything else that he needed to cognize. Traveling into this survey. Griffin. knew he would run into bias. subjugation. and many adversities. but he did non genuinely cognize how bad it was until now. He was no longer allowed to utilize any bathroom he pleased. Sometimes he would hold to walk all the manner across town. even when there was a bathroom right by him. because he could non utilize a white man’s installations.

Throughout his experience as a black adult male he deals with abuses and battles on a day-to-day footing. After being in New Orleans for a piece. he decides to travel to the bosom of Mississippi where racial bias is even worse for inkinesss. Griffin notices that the black communities at that place seemed to hold given up hope of of all time being equal. and he begins to detect the same expression across his ain face. The Whites were the chief subscribers to this loss of hope. For illustration. when he was siting the coach into Mississippi they took a 10 minute bathroom interruption.

The coach driver refused to allow the black riders away because he did non desire to hold to travel “round them up” when they left. After witnessing this sense of licking in Mississippi and how awful the Whites were. he decides to venture to Montgomery. Alabama where he is shocked at what he finds. In Montgomery. the black community is recharged with finding. They pattern inactive opposition against the racialist Torahs and regulations set against them.

They are filled with hope and the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. They are non afraid to travel to imprison or confront the other effects that may lie in front. After seeing this. he begins to exchange back and Forth between being a black adult male and so a white adult male the really following twenty-four hours. He visits the really same topographic points as a white adult male and is treated with the greatest regard. while as a black adult male he was treated with fright and intuition. He was able to travel into the eating houses where inkinesss were non even allowed to halt to look at the bill of fare. Switch overing between black and white opened his eyes to how society treated inkinesss and Whites at the clip.

One twenty-four hours he was a shame and the following he was treated like a male monarch. After this long trip. he decided to allow his tegument to the full return white and travel back place. After looking over his information and forming it he decides it is eventually clip for the populace to cognize the truth. He so publishes his findings and goes on telecasting for interviews. He is asked to talk on many shows. Many people support him and his findings. but the people in his place town do non offer much support. Peoples in his town Begin to turn on him and endanger his life and the lives of his household members.

He asks the constabulary to watch his house so his household is non harmed. It gets so bad that they have to go forth for a piece. When they come back. nil has changed. Person in town bents a silent person of him on Main Street. The silent person is half black and half white and there was a mark on it that read “John Griffin” . He decided to travel his household off one time and for all to forestall anyone from acquiring hurt. This narrative gave me an inside expression of what it was like to be both a black and a white individual during 1959 in the South. I was unable to set the book down because I was so intrigued.

I have ne’er heard the black person’s position to racial bias earlier. This narrative took my breath off. My favourite portion of this book is when John Griffin ( 1960 ) depict how you are treated based on your tegument colour. I was the same adult male. whether white or black. Yet when I was white. I received the brotherly-love smilings and the privileges from Whites and the hatred stares or servility from the Negroes. And when I was a Negro. the Whites judged me tantrum for the debris pile. while the Negroes treated me with great heat. ( p. 126 ) I am shocked from what I read in this book.

The writer was treated wholly different as a white adult male than he was as a black adult male. When he was a white adult male. he receives regard and courtesy from the other Whites. but intuition and fright from the inkinesss. When he was a black adult male. he receives hatred and ill will from the Whites. but warmth and generousness from his fellow inkinesss. It surprised me that you could feel these distinguishable feelings toward him while reading. It was about like I was populating it myself. It is brainsick how cold-hearted some of the white people acted towards him.

Some had sympathy in their eyes. but others were set to do his life horrible. This book merely goes to demo you how genuinely bad it was for the inkinesss during segregation. It is cogent evidence of it. and the narratives of John Griffin are more realistic than any told or documented before. Black Like Me was non made up to sympathise the inkinesss or as an overreaction. It’s the truth that Griffin personally witnessed and lived. The Whites dehumanized the inkinesss and treated them like barbarians. Towards the terminal of the book he was walking down a main road for stat mis trusting person would pick him up.

During the twenty-four hours. non a individual white individual would pick him up. This all changed during the dark. That dark. he ever had a drive. He realized after a piece. that the Whites merely picked him up to hear about the black man’s sex life. This disgusts me. These work forces were inquiring him abhorrent inquiries. and if he did non give him a sufficient reply. he would be kicked out of the vehicle. The inquiries that they were inquiring him would ne’er be asked to his friends. This portion of the book illustrates how the Whites did non care for the black man’s pride and alternatively wanted to dehumanise him.

Reading this book. Black Like Me. opened my eyes to the panics that the black people faced in the South during 1959. I besides gain an apprehension of how Whites were treated in comparing to inkinesss. John Griffin was really courageous for taking on this undertaking and printing his findings. This must hold taken a batch of bravery. but his work helped many people. Without this inside expression at the intervention of inkinesss in the South. we might ne’er hold known how genuinely atrocious it was. Yes. there are other narratives. but this is a full history of one man’s journey in and out of the bosom of segregation.


Hi there, would you like to get such a paper? How about receiving a customized one? Check it out