Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
I just finished reading a great memoir, ‘Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood’ by Trevor Noah. I will admit up front that I knew nothing about Trevor Noah going into this book other than that he had a television show. So I definitely came into this book club pick totally unbiased as far as his career and entertainment background. Well, I will give him credit for one thing and that is being an absolutely devoted son to his mother. I enjoyed just reading his stories about her and her attitude toward life in general and how she rebelled against the way women are treated in South Africa. Very fascinating and especially the story toward the end about her horrific ordeal that she managed to survive.
The other thing I found fascinating about his memoir is the background on Apartheid in his native country. The details that he provides and breaks down definitely goes over and above what I knew about it. Apartheid was a bad thing I already knew but I truly had no idea just how badly people were treated, of all races actually, within the different ‘sectors’ or classes as a result of this injust policy. This policy not only governed relations between the white minority and nonwhite majority but it also sanctioned racial segregation and political and economic discrimination against nonwhites. Noah also breaks down the languages and attitudes that the different groups or segments of the population had toward each other and he goes into how he had to find his way growing up, having a black mother and white father, as this resulted in him being an outcast to some and being treated differently by others.
It is a very good read if you know Noah from his position in the entertainment industry and want more background on him or if you just want an interesting insight into South America and how he managed to survive during a very difficult time in that country’s history. It is a very good story about love, fighting for your beliefs, and making it out of a hard life to find success.
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