The ingenuity of Black comedians not only comes through their ability to use wit and humor to make light of varying situations but the best ones are able to teach valuable life lessons through humor. These tidbits become some of the most memorable that stick within Black culture. Some of these comedians even find it wise to put such valuable lessons into print to be cherished and referred to for decades to come.
Here are five mus- read autobiographies by notable Black comedians:
Pryor Convictions: And Other Life Sentences by Richard Pryor
Richard Pryor is one of the most prolific and distinguished Black comedians in history. In his memoir Pryor Convictions, he delves into his challenging upbringing by recalling being raised in a brothel, being sexually assaulted as a child and responds to the intimate and infamous moments that became public knowledge and impacted his career.
The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish
Over the past decade or so, Tiffany Haddish has catapulted into the superstar she has always set out to be. However, it has been an intricate journey for her to get to where she is.The Last Black Unicorn goes deep into her experience growing up in South Central Los Angeles struggling to make ends meet and survive in a world that wasn't always ready to embrace her unique gifts. Through humor and rawness, she delivers a story that only she can tell.
Born A Crime by Trevor Noah
Trevor Noah is easily one of the most cherished personalities within American culture right now. His rise to becoming host of the Emmy and Peabody Award winning "The Daily Show," has been propelled by his lived experience and years of work on the international comedy circuit. He applies the same level of tact and sharpness in explaining trending topics to his conveyance of his life's story. Encouraged to be read in schools all of the US, Born A Crime is a prime example of maintaining one's strength in the face of adversity and stacked odds. In the midst of these things, Noah evoked lightheartedness while recalling his personal history all while still finding an opportunity to learn or grow in the process.
Book by Whoopi Goldberg
EGOT winner and talk show host Whoopi Goldberg has inspired generations through her unapologetic outlook on a plethora of topics. Staying true to her personal style of just making you understand exactly what she means, her 1997 autobiography Book distinctly establishes just how humorous she truly is and why she's rightfully earned her legendary status. With anecdotes related to her career, relationships and how she got her name by being referred to as a "walking whoopee cushion," this personal account is unlike any other.
Callus On My Soul by Dick Gregory
A comedian turned activist with a fiery disposition, the late Dick Gregory was always serious when it came to uplifting the Black community. Through the usage of social commentary, he honed his knack for storytelling in ways that made you think. A follow-up to his debut memoir, Callus On My Soul speaks to his dynamic perspective and work during the Civil Rights Movement and his genuine thoughts on the leaning of race relations in the United States.