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sociology

The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates

 
 
Author
Wes Moore.
Publisher Spiegel & Grau  
Format hardcover
ISBN 9780385528191
Pages/Publication Date 233/2010
Daedalus Item Code 65005
This item is not available.
Description
Two kids with the same name lived in similar Baltimore neighborhoods. One went on to be a Rhodes Scholar, decorated combat veteran, White House Fellow, and investment banker; the other is serving a life sentence in prison. Wes Moore tells both of their stories in this fast-moving, unputdownable double profile. Shortly after 2000, when the Baltimore Sun ran a small piece about the author winning his scholarship and also named the other Wes Moore in connection with the murder of an off-duty policeman, Moore has exchanged letters and visited with his less fortunate namesake. Here he tells a gripping tale of their shockingly similar youths, and the key life choices that led them down such wildly divergent fates.

"Meeting [the author's] double and delving into his life reveals deeper likenesses: raised in fatherless families and poor black neighborhoods, both felt the lure of the money and status to be gained from dealing drugs. That the author resisted the criminal underworld while the other Wes drifted into it is chalked up less to character than to the influence of relatives, mentors, and expectations that pushed against his own delinquent impulses, to the point of exiling him to military school. Moore writes with subtlety and insight about the plight of ghetto youth, viewing it from inside and out; he probes beneath the pathologies to reveal the pressures—poverty, a lack of prospects, the need to respond to violence with greater violence—that propelled the other Wes to his doom. The result is a moving exploration of roads not taken."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

 
 
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