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Born a crime and other third world problems…
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Born a crime and other third world problems (original 2016; edition 2016)

by Trevor Noah

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,7713181,962 (4.37)410
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The compelling, inspiring, and comically sublime story of one man's coming-of-age, set during the twilight of apartheid and the tumultuous days of freedom that followedNAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BYMichiko Kakutani, New York Times - Newsday - Esquire - NPR - BooklistTrevor Noah's unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Living proof of his parents' indiscretion, Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away. Finally liberated by the end of South Africa's tyrannical white rule, Trevor and his mother set forth on a grand adventure, living openly and freely and embracing the opportunities won by a centuries-long struggle.Born a Crime is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. It is also the story of that young man's relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and fervently religious mother--his teammate, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would ultimately threaten her own life.The stories collected here are by turns hilarious, dramatic, and deeply affecting. Whether subsisting on caterpillars for dinner during hard times, being thrown from a moving car during an attempted kidnapping, or just trying to survive the life-and-death pitfalls of dating in high school, Trevor illuminates his curious world with an incisive wit and unflinching honesty. His stories weave together to form a moving and searingly funny portrait of a boy making his way through a damaged world in a dangerous time, armed only with a keen sense of humor and a mother's unconventional, unconditional love.Praise for Born a Crime " A] compelling new memoir . . . By turns alarming, sad and funny, Trevor Noah's] book provides a harrowing look, through the prism of Mr. Noah's family, at life in South Africa under apartheid. . . . Born a Crime is not just an unnerving account of growing up in South Africa under apartheid, but a love letter to the author's remarkable mother."--Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times" An] unforgettable memoir."--Parade "What makes Born a Crime such a soul-nourishing pleasure, even with all its darker edges and perilous turns, is reading Noah recount in brisk, warmly conversational prose how he learned to negotiate his way through the bullying and ostracism. . . . What also helped was having a mother like Patricia Nombuyiselo Noah. . . . Consider Born a Crime another such gift to her--and an enormous gift to the rest of us."--USA Today" Noah] thrives with the help of his astonishingly fearless mother. . . . Their fierce bond makes this story soar."--People… (more)
Member:SueJ1
Title:Born a crime and other third world problems
Authors:Trevor Noah
Info:London : John Murray, 2016.
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work Information

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah (2016)

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» See also 410 mentions

English (311)  German (1)  Spanish (1)  Catalan (1)  Estonian (1)  All languages (315)
Showing 1-5 of 311 (next | show all)
5.0 stars! Wow. Just...wow. ( )
  Jonez | Sep 23, 2022 |
A fascinating memoir of a man born under apartheid in South Africa. The story should have been a really difficult read: poverty, racism, domestic violence. But instead the author made everything seem very and humorous.

I listened to the audio narrated by the author, and I'm certain this added to the experience. He's telling the stories of his own childhood and it comes through in his voice.

Wonderful book!
( )
  sriddell | Aug 6, 2022 |
Trevor Noah is a comedian and current host of The Daily Show. He was born in South Africa in 1984, just before a state of emergency was declared by the Botha government. The townships were rioting in protest of apartheid, and racial tensions were very high. During that tumultuous time, the union of a white man and black woman was dangerous, but Noah's parents took that risk. Trevor was born "colored," neither black nor white according to the government, and he could have been taken to a children's home and his parents imprisoned, if they had been reported. As the title suggests, his birth was a crime.

Noah's mother was a very religious woman with strong views and morals. She raised Trevor outside the box he was born into and instilled the sense that he need not be limited by apartheid or any other construct. She saw to it that he had the best educational opportunities, and that, plus his facility with languages, gave him a strong foundation for rising above his circumstances. She herself, however, would fall victim to the patriarchy that she didn't want to believe applied to her.

This memoir was warm, funny, and insightful into the underpinnings of apartheid and its effects on both Noah and his mother. Most chapters opened with a page about an aspect of apartheid and these were enlightening. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and recommend it highly. ( )
  labfs39 | Jul 31, 2022 |
Audiobook was especially captivating ( )
  vpor1222 | Jul 21, 2022 |
Totally enjoyed this book. I listened to the audio which I recommend if you can get it. Listening to Trevor Noah's voice made the story more real. Plus it gave me the chance to hear all the bits in different African languages that are in the book.

The story is basically a love letter to his mother. She was a really impressive person who refused to abide by the rules of apartheid. Very inspiring. Plus I was reminded how big the world is and how the western world and the US are not vastly important in large parts of the world.

Recommended. ( )
  Luziadovalongo | Jul 14, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 311 (next | show all)

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Noah, Trevorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Artigas, NúriaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bronswijk, Ineke vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Oostindiër, AnnoesjkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schlatterer, HeikeÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Studios, AudiblePublishersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my mother. My first fan. Thank you for making me a man.
First words
The genius of apartheid was convincing people who were the overwhelming majority to turn on each other.
Quotations
Growing up the way I did, I learned how easy it is for white people to get comfortable with a system that awards them all the perks.
That, and so many other smaller incidents in my life, made me realize that language, even more than color, defines who you are to people.
The doctors took her up to the delivery room, cut open her belly, and reached in and pulled out a half-white, half-black child who violated any number of laws, statutes, and regulations—I was born a crime.
Sometimes we’d pull over and go up to the wall, and she’d put me on her shoulders like I was a little periscope.
I was just high-energy and knew what I wanted to do.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The compelling, inspiring, and comically sublime story of one man's coming-of-age, set during the twilight of apartheid and the tumultuous days of freedom that followedNAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BYMichiko Kakutani, New York Times - Newsday - Esquire - NPR - BooklistTrevor Noah's unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Living proof of his parents' indiscretion, Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away. Finally liberated by the end of South Africa's tyrannical white rule, Trevor and his mother set forth on a grand adventure, living openly and freely and embracing the opportunities won by a centuries-long struggle.Born a Crime is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. It is also the story of that young man's relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and fervently religious mother--his teammate, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would ultimately threaten her own life.The stories collected here are by turns hilarious, dramatic, and deeply affecting. Whether subsisting on caterpillars for dinner during hard times, being thrown from a moving car during an attempted kidnapping, or just trying to survive the life-and-death pitfalls of dating in high school, Trevor illuminates his curious world with an incisive wit and unflinching honesty. His stories weave together to form a moving and searingly funny portrait of a boy making his way through a damaged world in a dangerous time, armed only with a keen sense of humor and a mother's unconventional, unconditional love.Praise for Born a Crime " A] compelling new memoir . . . By turns alarming, sad and funny, Trevor Noah's] book provides a harrowing look, through the prism of Mr. Noah's family, at life in South Africa under apartheid. . . . Born a Crime is not just an unnerving account of growing up in South Africa under apartheid, but a love letter to the author's remarkable mother."--Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times" An] unforgettable memoir."--Parade "What makes Born a Crime such a soul-nourishing pleasure, even with all its darker edges and perilous turns, is reading Noah recount in brisk, warmly conversational prose how he learned to negotiate his way through the bullying and ostracism. . . . What also helped was having a mother like Patricia Nombuyiselo Noah. . . . Consider Born a Crime another such gift to her--and an enormous gift to the rest of us."--USA Today" Noah] thrives with the help of his astonishingly fearless mother. . . . Their fierce bond makes this story soar."--People

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This book highlights critical issues on racism in africa
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