Richard Wright's autobiography, Black Boy, is a hard hitting novel that either stimulates praise or anger from those who read it. He uses his autobiography as a personal and political protest against the psychological mistreatment of young
Negroes by both black and white Southern communities. The psychological mistreatment forced on him by blacks was simply in the form of beatings and censure from relatives which were intended to make him submissive and keep him from being lynched. The psychological mistreatment forced on him by whites was simply having to live and adhere to Jim Crow Laws. Some people have asked why would Richard Wright write an autobiography of this nature. His life experiences definitely would not have been as effective in arousing the public's interest written as fiction. I found his autobiography to be tough, warm, funny,and compelling. I have no doubt in my mind that his experiences were as he stated, because as autobiography goes - it just tells it like it is!
This report prepared by Marlive Harris