In 1957, Melba Pattillo Beals did not intend to make history. She simply wanted an education. But like every other African-American in the Jim Crow south, she was considered to be second class and did not deserve the same education as her white peers. A member of the of Little Rock Nine, she was one of the first African-American students to enroll at the historically all white Central High in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Her memoir, Warriors Don’t Cry, was last updated in 2007. Told in a first person, the reader is taken directly into the writer’s head and experiences the Civil Rights Movement through Ms. Beals’s perspective and memories.
The main message I got from reading this book is that it doesn’t take place in another world and another era. It takes place in America, not too long ago. If nothing else, it is a stark reminder of the ugly underbelly of American culture and how we must continue to fight for the equality of all citizens. Ms. Beals got the ball rolling, it is of the utmost importance that we continue what she and the other members of the Little Rock Nine started.
I absolutely recommend it.