Brothers, Black and Poor: A True Story of Courage and Survival

Sylvester Monroe, Author, Peter Goldman, Author, Vern E. Smith, Photographer William Morrow & Company $18.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-688-07622-1
Twelve men who grew up in a black South Chicago housing project participated in this portrait-study by a Newsweek team headed by Monroe, a former resident of the same ghetto and now the magazine's Washington correspondent, and editor Goldman, coauthor of Charlie Company, etc. Despite the lack of a male role model in their families, which were headed by single mothers in a racially isolated, impoverished enclave, most of the then teenagers had dreams, the usually futile pursuit of which and resulting anger they discuss here with a singular lack of self-pity. Some of them sought quick rewards as hustlers and outlaws, and others found transient glory in basketball, gang warfare and the military. Several ``brothers'' aspired to the American Dream of job, home, wife and perhaps a luxury car, or settled for waiting for the state lottery big hit. Under affirmative action, a select few obtained a good education and succeeded in the mainstream world, leaving behind those who failed to break out of the ``cycle of despair.'' Photos not seen by PW. BOMC and QPBC selections. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1988
Release date: 06/01/1988
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