Darkroom: A Memoir in Black and White

by Lila Quintero Weaver

Lila Quintero Weaver spent much of her childhood in Marion, Alabama. It was the 1960s,... read more

Lila Quintero Weaver spent much of her childhood in Marion, Alabama. It was the 1960s, when the huge dividing line between black and white was being tensely challenged. Her family were Argentine immigrants, her mother of European descent, her father part Native Indian. Her father was a passionate photographer standing on the edge of history. He knew the significance of what was happening around them and was determined to record what he saw on film. Young Lila knew her family didn’t fit on either side of that racial line, but it took time for her to comprehend the hugeness of what was happening. Understanding came through experiences both poignant (“My first black classmate was Rosetta. She looked terrified”) and deeply unsettling (“ … he got exactly what he deserved”—a comment she overheard as two white teachers discussed the death of African American Jimmie Lee Jackson, shot by a state trooper while trying to find a safe place for his mother and grandfather after a peaceful protest was disrupted by whites and turned violent). Weaver’s adult understanding informs this look back, but in a way that is enlightening rather than intrusive as the significance of events from her childhood and young adulthood come into focus. (Age 13 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2013

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