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2 Burnside Ethnic Studies- General

The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother


The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother Cover

ISBN13: 9781594481925
ISBN10: 159448192x
Condition: Standard
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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

Rachel Coker, January 25, 2011 (view all comments by Rachel Coker)
This was a selection for our synagogue's book club. It's interesting and well written, with lots of great detail about life in a big family and New York City and the South in the '50s and '60s. It didn't inspire me or radically change my views about race or anything like that, but I think I have pretty high expectations for memoirs at this point. I will say that I find it amazing and odd that a woman could keep so much of her personal history from her children for so long.
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chocochic53, May 3, 2009 (view all comments by chocochic53)
The Color of Water is an fascinating memoir. As a Caucasian living in a predominately Caucasian town in the U.S. I have never experienced many issues with race. Seeing the struggle that James went through as a black man with a white mother trying to discover the importance of race and background was very interesting and gave me a view into a completely different way of life, even though it is still in the same country as me. I would recommend this book to people of any ethnicity, even if you don't like discussing or reading about race. This is not a normal story and it opened my eyes in incredible ways.
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Jeane, April 2, 2008 (view all comments by Jeane)
This memoir tells the story of two members of a family: James McBride and his mother, Ruth. Ruth was the daughter of immigrant Orthodox Jews. She grew up in the South under the hand of an abusive father. As soon as she was old enough, Ruth fled north, where she married a Black man, converted to Christianity, founded a Baptist church, and eventually raised twelve children. James was the youngest of these. He tells the story of growing up in a poor, bi-racial household alongside the story of his mother's life, which he had to wheedle out of her. As much as The Color of Water addresses issues of racism, identity and religion, it is more about family values. It is about how one rather eccentric woman lived the way she wanted to without regard to anyone's opinion, and instilled in her children strong moral codes and work ethic. They learned above all from their mother the value of education and how to make do for themselves- for they all graduated from college. However, other examples of Ruth's parenting skills leave something to be desired. Her children suffered constantly from huger and poverty, and she was extremely secretive about her own past and family, even when questioned about it by her children. A very unsettling book, by any accounts.
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Product Details

A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother
Mcbride, James
McBride, James
Riverhead Trade
People of Color
Racially mixed people
Personal Memoirs
Parenting - Parent & Adult Child
cultural heritage
Discrimination & Race Relations
New york (n.y.)
Racially mixed people - New York (State) -
Biography - General
Reading Skills
Edition Number:
Edition Description:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
9 x 6 in 1 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Featured Titles » History and Social Science
Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » Family Issues
History and Social Science » African American Studies » General
History and Social Science » Ethnic Studies » General

The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$3.95 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Riverhead Trade - English 9781594481925 Reviews:
"Review" by , "[A] triumph."
"Review" by , "As lively as a novel, a well-written, thoughtful contribution to the literature on race."
"Synopsis" by , With a new Introduction to this touching homage to his mother, the author paints a portrait of growing up in a black neighborhood as the child of an interracial marriage. Although raised an Orthodox Jew in the South, McBride's mother abandoned her heritage, moved to Harlem, and married a black man.
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