The Parchman Ordeal: Background information when reading The Deepest South of All

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The Deepest South of All

True Stories from Natchez, Mississippi

by Richard Grant

The Deepest South of All by Richard Grant X
The Deepest South of All by Richard Grant
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  • Published:
    Sep 2020, 288 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Jane McCormack
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About this Book

The Parchman Ordeal

This article relates to The Deepest South of All

Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman Richard Grant's The Deepest South of All examines the aftermath of slavery in the Deep South through the lens of Natchez, Mississippi. One clear inference that can be made from his Natchezian narratives is that the past must be confronted before it can lay dormant in its grave. Unfortunately, history is often written with its authors only addressing that which they personally deem important. Grant raises this issue in his exploration of Natchez when he broaches the glaring oversight of the Parchman Ordeal.

The Parchman Ordeal occurred in Natchez in October, 1965, when nearly 150 primarily Black protestors were arrested and taken to the notorious Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman, where they were stripped, searched, taunted and humiliated. They had set out to assert their civil rights and bring attention to racial inequality through peaceful protest. At the penitentiary, they were subjected to dehumanizing conditions and abuse. The ordinance that was allegedly grounds ...

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