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Black Like Me | Study Guide

John Howard Griffin

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o one, not even a saint, can livewithout a sense of personal value. John Howard Griffin, November 24 entry Sources:, The Telegraph, Texas State Historical Association Copyright © 2018 Course Hero, Inc. Hospitality Hospitality toward one another is a way blackscope with racism. Blindness & Invisibility Blacks feel invisiblein a world where whitesare blind to racism. Skin Color Simply changing skincolor results in beingtreated differently. Themes Racist Backlash Racist groups and individuals used violence and intimidation to try to keep African Americans down, something Griffin experienced firsthand. Civil Rights Movement Griffin’s experiment took place at the height of the civil rights movement, which challenged racial segregation and violence. Catholicism Griffin views the racism he experiences through his Catholic faith and accuses white Christian racists of hypocrisy. Context Griffin took up writing after blindness resulting from a war injury forced him to abandon his plans to become a doctor. He wrote several essays, short stories, and two novels while blind. After miraculously recovering his sight, he undertook the project that would become Black Like Me. JOHN HOWARD GRIFFIN1920–80 Author Griffin and his family suffer backlash when he publicizes his experiment. Recognition Griffin experiences the psychological toll of racism and segregation firsthand. Segregation After darkening his skin, Griffin sees a stranger when he looks in a mirror. Identity Griffin, a white writer from Texas, darkens his skin in order to pass as a black man. He then travels to the Deep South in November 1959 and lives among African Americans for six weeks. His purpose—to bear witness to the treatment of African Americans by white Southerners. Crossing theColor Line inthe Deep South OVERVIEW English Original Language 1961 Year Published John Howard Griffin Author Black Like Me Memoir Nonfiction

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