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One Book 2023-2024: Home

One Book Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

Drama, comedy, and tragedy – 4Cs One Book

Born a Crime by Trevor Noah, has it all!Born a Crime Book Cover

The One Book Committee is excited to announce that this year's selection is Born a Crime, a memoir by Trevor Noah, South African comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and former host of The Daily Show. 

Free copies of Born a Crime are available at the front desk in the Wilkens Library. Pick up a copy read it, and pass it on!  

Born a Crime is the memoir of one man’s coming-of-age, set during the twilight of apartheid and the days of freedom that followed.  Noah’s unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away.

Born a Crime is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist. It is also the story of that young man’s relationship with his fearless, rebellious, and fervently religious mother—his teammate, a woman determined to save her son from the cycle of poverty, violence, and abuse that would ultimately threaten her own life.

One Book events will kick-off with a Read Aloud on February 14, 2024!

Debate – Date/Time TBA

In mid-April, the CCCC Argumentation and Debate class will debate a question or issue from Born a Crime.

February 14 Read Aloud - (For the love of books and reading!)


February 14, 9:00 – 4:00

Lorusso Atrium

Readers needed! (an emailed sign-up sheet for readers has been sent out) 

Our goal is to read the entire book over the course of the day. 

Faculty, please consider bringing a whole class to read and listen.

Listeners are also vital to making the day an event! 

Even if you cannot read, please stop by for a few minutes to listen.

Film – “A Snake Gives Birth to a Snake

A Snake Gives Birth to a Snake 

Wednesday, February 28, 2:00

MMWilkens (South) G-8

No sign-up required!

A diverse group of South African actors tours war-torn regions of the world to share their own country's experiment with reconciliation. As they ignite a dialogue among people with raw memories of atrocity, the actors find they must once again confront their homeland's violent past, and question their own capacity for healing and forgiveness.

Featuring original music by jazz legend Hugh Masekela.  A Snake Gives Birth to a Snake explores the power of theater.

“The film is neither truth nor fiction, but it is true. It has hope based in despair. It is a journey where darkness and light constantly jump out at you, where one truth morphs into its opposite. It takes these courageous actors through worlds often more painful than their own nightmares…where people also have masks and are better rehearsed than they are. It is an homage (for me) to South Africans – as a microcosm of what is possible. It can be painful…But it allows us to celebrate a terrible truth that every really good actor knows – that what another person looks like…is our own responsibility.”- Michael Lessac