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The Other Side of the River a Story of Two Towns, a Death, and America's Dilemma

by Alex Kotlowitz

  • ISBN: 9780385477215
  • ISBN10: 038547721X

The Other Side of the River a Story of Two Towns, a Death, and America's Dilemma

by Alex Kotlowitz

  • List Price: $16.00
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Publisher: Random House Inc
  • Publish date: 01/01/1999
  • ISBN: 9780385477215
  • ISBN10: 038547721X
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Description: When Alex Kotlowitz's There Are No Children Here was first published in 1991, it was a national event giving voice to the heartbreaking struggle of two boys growing up amid the violence of Chicago's public housing. The book's impact made clear that Kotlowitz's voice is one of compassion and intelligence, a voice to be trusted on the subject of race in America.

In The Other Side of the River, Kotlowitz brings readers to two Michigan towns, St. Joseph and Benton Harbor. Separated by the St. Joseph River, they are geographically close, yet in every other sense worlds apart: St. Joseph is a prosperous lakeshore community, 95-percent white, while Benton Harbor is impoverished and 92-percent black.

When the body of a black teenage boy from Benton Harbor is found in the river, unhealed wounds and suspicions between the two towns' populations surface as well. The investigation into Eric McGinnis's death inevitably becomes a screen onto which each community projects its resentments and fears.

Beautifully written and painstakingly reported, The Other Side of the River sensitively portrays the lives and hopes of the towns' citizens as they wrestle with this mystery and with others -- and reveals the attitudes and misperceptions that undermine race relations throughout America. This powerful story challenges us to think about our own assumptions about race, no matter which side of the river we live on. In this gripping and ultimately profound book, Alex Kotlowitz proves why he is one of this country's foremost wirters on the ever-explosive issue of race.

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