“While most children are proof of their parents’ love, I was the proof of their criminality.”

Trevor Noah’s mother was black and his father was white, which was a problem in South Africa in 1984.  The Immorality Act of 1927 prohibited “illicit carnal intercourse between Europeans and natives” and said that such acts could result in imprisonment. Until the laws changed when Noah was six, it was risky for him to be seen with his parents. At any time, the government could strip his parents of their custody and send Noah off to an orphanage.  This memoir is “essential reading” because it does more to “expose apartheid than any other recent history book or academic text.”

Noah, Trevor. Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood. Spiegel & Grau, 2016, p. 27.

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