A Lesson Before DyingeBook - 1994
"This majestic, moving novel is an instant classic, a book that will be read, discussed and taught beyond the rest of our lives."-- Chicago Tribune
Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, A Lesson Before Dying is a deep and compassionate novel about a young man who returns to 1940s Cajun country to visit a black youth on death row for a crime he didn't commit. Together they come to understand the heroism of resisting.
From the critically acclaimed author of A Gathering of Old Men and The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman .
From Library Staff
Set in Bayonne, LA (a fictional community Gaines has used previously) in the late 1940s, main character Grant Wiggins visits Jefferson, who is on death row for a crime he was unwittingly involved in.
From the critics
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This novel follows the events after a verdict is handed out to an uneducated black man on shoddy evidence and very slim motives. The implication is that the verdict was racist and the rest of the book explores that theme. During his trial, the man, (Jefferson) is compared to a hog. The rest of the novel is about the development of his character as Grant, a cynical black schoolteacher teaches him that he is just as brave and valuable as any of the white folk. The novel is a heartfelt testimony that centres around the hopelessness of unjust discrimination and a person's self worth.
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