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Warriors Don't Cry: A Searing Memoir of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock's Central High

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

In this essential autobiographical account by one of the Civil Rights Movement's most powerful figures, Melba Pattillo Beals of the Little Rock Nine explores not only the oppressive force of racism,... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Excellent for teaching

This is an excellent book about the Little Rock 9 told by one of the students. The details are excellent and it gives a REAL account of the torture the students went through, and the depths to which people can sink and how terribly they treat each other. I was glad to see an account of one of the MAJOR events in the American Civil Rights struggle which did not play down what happened, nor sugar coat it. People need to know what happened, and what it was like for the participants. This book will tell them. I highly recommend this book.

Beals' story is a must-read

I have used this book in the classroom with 11th graders with wonderful results. The poignant story of a young girl, full of heart and courage, and how she survives Little Rock's hate-filled Central High School arouses tremendous emotion in the students. Beals holds back little and her firsthand account of the Little Rock Nine's integration to an all-white school is a terrific commentary on human strength and dignity. Social studies parallels are easily drawn with this novel as well.

A compelling voice...

This is an amazing book, compellingly narrated through Beals' diaries from her youth. Her first-person experience of one of the highly-charged, ugly parts of American history opened my eyes to the reality of and struggle against racism that exists even to today. I was horrified and humbled that events such as those experienced by Beals happened within relatively recent history. I fell in love with Beals' grandma - a woman of true wisdom, integrity, and encouragement. My hat off to Melba Patillo Beals for an amazing, compelling narration of our history. Thank you for helping me see through the eyes of a strong and struggling child walking into the face/voice/fist of hatred.


This work is perfectly sequenced and thoroughly documented, mainly because the author kept a detailed diary during this period. Years later, her diary, plus archived news reports and a great writing style combined to produce this searing expose. It is the story of the 1957-1958 integration attempt at Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, as seen through the eyes of a participant, one of the Little Rock Nine, Melba Patttilo Beals. In WARRIORS DON'T CRY, it's heartwrenching to read of the actual daily brutality and torture of kicks, slaps , spitting, sprays and verbal abuse that these children suffered. The events that occurred at this timne made an unerasable mark of violent racist psyche on the multi-colored design that composes America's people. This book is also emotional because it is easy to see that those in power could have made the transition to integration a much smoother and less painful step into an inevitably better social structure.This was a hard read. I had to put it down several times because the visualization was just too intense, the bigotry and viciousness too unadulterated. Yet, I think it's something every American needs to read so that the actions contained in this book will never be repeated.
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