The Book “Black Boy” by Richard Wright

Pages: 2
Words: 576

Reading the Black Boy book was a moving and very emotional experience for me; it hit me with a realization that racism has been a problem among individuals in society since time immemorial as it still carries on today. The topic of discrimination and racism faced by black people is familiar in literature, with many black women and men having to pass through all odds to achieve what they want. Wrights (1945), in his book Black Boy, explains racism not only as an unpleasant assumption held by hateful individuals but also as an inside issue embraided into the inner core of the whole community.

The author’s narration of his struggles as a black man living only to be oppressed by white people and the white system makes me see how one’s color, ethnicity, race, and gender impact lives. This brings me to an understanding of how being born and living in the United States as a black man or woman was harsh and challenging. Black men are stereotyped and called names such as boys, stupid, careless, and lazy. I can only say that America failed many black men, women, and children who had to go through many challenges to reach their potential instead of living their lives to the fullest.

Every black man had to fight for his rights since no rule or law was placed to ensure that blacks were treated with dignity and respect. Moreover, discrimination was linked with many challenges such as degradation, lack of well-paying jobs, and living conditions. Reading the narrator’s childhood experience almost brought me to tears; as a child, no one has to grow through such experiences. This book has taught me the importance of always standing up for myself by believing in my worth and capabilities, just like Richard. Even though he was at odds with his family and those who wanted him to accept his reduced status in society, he insisted he was capable.

In his autobiographical book “Black Boy,” Richard Wright uses his story to explain a tale of hope and determination of a black man living in poverty, injustice, and violence in America. Richard illuminates’ his life experiences by writing about his upbringing as an Afro-American in the Jim crow south. He gives an encounter on the oppression and struggles faced by his impoverished family and his courage to break free from the environment generated by various circumstances, such as lack of love, security, and acceptance. He possesses a hunger for acceptance, love, knowledge, and understanding. His protests are both personal and metaphysical, a cry of anguish in the face of a human condition. Wright explains how racism and violence affect individuals’ lives through lacking the ability to express oneself due to one’s color. The writer’s explication of these experiences shows how living in America during those years was a challenging situation.

His goal is to reflect on the racist environment around him and to show the fulfillment of the strong desires he witnessed. The author describes the agonizing and confusing memories that he hopes can result in a greater understanding of a black man’s life in America. Additionally, Wright uses a lyrical and ironic tone described in the form of a blues song, explaining the struggles of life and the good things in life. The story addresses everyone and hopes to convey the harsh realities that one can experience in life. And the need to never give up trying through persevering and being resilient.


Wrights, R. (1945). Black Boy. Harper & Brothers.