Flying over 96th Street: Memoir of an East Harlem White Boy

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9780743247504: Flying over 96th Street: Memoir of an East Harlem White Boy
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A personal story about growing up in the public housing projects of East Harlem during the 1950s and 1960s follows the author's education at an exclusive white school, his friendships with African American and Puerto Rican neighbors, and his witness to the growing civil rights movement.

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From the Inside Flap:

"This is an exemplary coming-of-age memoir....In eloquent, moving language...Webber details, with pathos and humor, how he slowly adjusted to his new circumstances and found friendship and love in one of the poorest areas of the city." -- Publishers Weekly

"Bravo to Tom Webber for such a beautifully written and sensitive reflection on his boyhood as a white kid growing up in black and brown Spanish Harlem in the 1950s and 1960s. His unique vantage point helps debunk commonly held stereotypes about Spanish Harlem, its people, youth, and race relations in general, and strengthens our connections to one another through an understanding of our shared history. Webber has created a blend of heartfelt innocence, historical document, and social commentary in this warm and multitextured memoir. Webber's sincerity, optimism, and honest insights are refreshingly uplifting." -- Piri Thomas, author of Down These Mean Streets

"Flying over 96th Street is not the usual story of dreary slum life, but a tough, riveting, and honest account of a white minister's son who grew up in East Harlem. A story that grips you and keeps you reading to the last page, it is a classic memoir in the mold of Angela's Ashes and Notes of a Native Son." -- Dan Wakefield, author of New York in the Fifties

"Diversity may be the hardest thing for society to live with, and the most dangerous thing to be without. Slowly but surely Tommy Webber approaches the goal that should be ours as well -- to celebrate rather than to fear our differences. This is a wonderful, poignant, funny, and most readable book. I loved it." -- William Sloane Coffin, author of Credo and The Heart Is a Little to the Left: Essays on Public Morality

"In this delightful book, Thomas L. Webber returns the memoir to its sacred and foundational purpose: to witness. As Webber narrates his coming-of-age in a style that is emotionally fluent and intellectually perceptive, we learn firsthand what it was like to grow up a young white boy above 96th Street in 1960s New York as the country was being rocked by the Civil Rights movement. A song of innocence and experience, Flying over 96th Street informs as it entertains -- as all great memoirs do." -- Katy Lederer, author of Poker Face: A Girlhood Among Gamblers

"It takes just the right mix of hard-boiled professionalism, holy boldness, and tender loving care to finally arrive at what we call humanity when dealing with the lives of other people. This book is the story of one dedicated man's inspired attempt to make the journey." -- Ossie Davis, actor, writer, producer, and director

"Tom Webber had the most interesting childhood of any white person I know. This is the fascinating, wonderfully observed story of his experiences growing up in East Harlem." -- Dave Barry, author and humor columnist for The Miami Herald

"A powerful and compelling story. A young boy lives, learns, and grows-almost against his will-into a wonderful adult, devoting his life to making the world a little bit better. Beautifully written. Hard to put down." -- Roger Fisher Professor emeritus, Harvard Law School, and co-author of Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In

About the Author:

Thomas L. Webber is the founder and Superintendent/Executive Director of Edwin Gould Academy, a coeducational, residential treatment school for adolescents in the foster care and juvenile justice systems.

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Thomas L. Webber
Published by Scribner, New York (2004)
ISBN 10: 0743247507 ISBN 13: 9780743247504
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Book Description Scribner, New York, 2004. Hardcover. Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: new. First edition. New in dust jacket. First edition/printing. Hardcover. 273 pp. Tommy Weber was nine yers old when his father became a founding minister of the East Harlem Protestant Church, moving his family form a spacious Upper West Side apartment to a small one in a massive housing project in East 102nd. The Webers became on of the very few white families in El Bario which is made up of predominently poor blacks and Puerto Ricans. Set during the late 1950s and the 1960s, this is thestory of one boy's struggle with race, poverty, and indentity in a city--and a country--grappling with the same issues. Seller Inventory # E22235

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