Black Girl/White Girl

Front Cover
HarperCollins, Oct 17, 2006 - Fiction - 272 pages
25 Reviews

Fifteen years ago, in 1975, Genna Hewett-Meade's college roommate died a mysterious, violent, terrible death. Minette Swift had been a fiercely individualistic scholarship student, an assertive—even prickly—personality, and one of the few black girls at an exclusive women's liberal arts college near Philadelphia. By contrast, Genna was a quiet, self-effacing teenager from a privileged upper-class home, self-consciously struggling to make amends for her own elite upbringing. When, partway through their freshman year, Minette suddenly fell victim to an increasing torrent of racist harassment and vicious slurs—from within the apparent safety of their tolerant, "enlightened" campus—Genna felt it her duty to protect her roommate at all costs.

Now, as Genna reconstructs the months, weeks, and hours leading up to Minette's tragic death, she is also forced to confront her own identity within the social framework of that time. Her father was a prominent civil defense lawyer whose radical politics—including defending anti-war terrorists wanted by the FBI—would deeply affect his daughter's outlook on life, and later challenge her deepest beliefs about social obligation in a morally gray world.

Black Girl / White Girl is a searing double portrait of "black" and "white," of race and civil rights in post-Vietnam America, captured by one of the most important literary voices of our time.

  

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Review: Black Girl/White Girl

User Review  - Pamela Scott - Goodreads

HIGHLIGHTS: Oates's characterisation is spot on. She does a great job of showing us how abrasive Minette is. Genna proves to be an interesting contrast to her. Genna doesn't just try to befriend ... Read full review

Review: Black Girl/White Girl

User Review  - Jim Leckband - Goodreads

The problem when reading the works of a writer that is as accomplished as Oates is that it is hard to simply take what is on the surface as all there is. Ostensibly this is a book about two girl ... Read full review

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
5
Section 3
19
Section 4
20
Section 5
29
Section 6
47
Section 7
54
Section 8
55
Section 25
168
Section 26
176
Section 27
184
Section 28
185
Section 29
186
Section 30
187
Section 31
191
Section 32
203

Section 9
60
Section 10
62
Section 11
66
Section 12
71
Section 13
73
Section 14
79
Section 15
84
Section 16
120
Section 17
125
Section 18
130
Section 19
138
Section 20
140
Section 21
159
Section 22
160
Section 23
161
Section 24
162
Section 33
205
Section 34
213
Section 35
216
Section 36
221
Section 37
226
Section 38
227
Section 39
228
Section 40
238
Section 41
239
Section 42
241
Section 43
243
Section 44
245
Section 45
249
Section 46
255
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Joyce Carol Oates is a recipient of the National Medal of Humanities, the National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, the Chicago Tribune Lifetime Achievement Award, the National Book Award, and the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction, and has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. She has written some of the most enduring fiction of our time, including the national bestsellers We Were the Mulvaneys; Blonde, which was nominated for the National Book Award; and the New York Times bestseller The Accursed. She is the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978.

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