Honky and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $14.95
  • Save: $5.49 (37%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 7 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Used: Good | Details
Sold by giggil
Condition: Used: Good
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Honky Paperback – September 18, 2001


See all 8 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$9.46
$6.94 $0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
$14.99




Frequently Bought Together

Honky + All God's Children: The Bosket Family and the American Tradition of Violence + Race and Crime
Price for all three: $95.38

Buy the selected items together

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Hero Quick Promo
Browse in Books with Buzz and explore more details on selected titles, including the current pick, "The Good Girl" by Mary Kubica.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 207 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Books; Reprint edition (September 18, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375727752
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375727757
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"I've studied whiteness the way I would a foreign language," declares Conley at the outset of his affecting, challenging memoir, laced with the retrospective wisdom of the sociologist (at New York University) he has become. As the child of bohemian, white parents, he grew up in an otherwise black and Hispanic housing project on New York's Lower East Side. At elementary school in the 1970s, he found himself placed in the "Chinese class," after his stint in the black classAwhere he was the only student not to receive corporal punishmentAleft him uncomfortable. Despite the family's lack of funds, they had cultural capital in the form of social connections, and were able to transfer young Dalton to a better school, where he began to feel some snobbery toward kids in his own neighborhood. Yet the friend who accepted Dalton most was a black youth from the neighborhood, Jerome, who was tragically disabled in a random act of violence that helped spur Conley's parents to leave the Lower East Side for subsidized housing for artists. Part of the memoir concerns the universality of povertyAbut a thoughtful examination of the privileges of race and class also emerges. Despite the book's title, the author cites only one major episode in which he was threatened and called "honky." Conley acknowledges that he doesn't know how to account for such successes as gaining admission into the selective Bronx High School of Science: race? parental protectiveness? his own aspirations? It is "the privilege of the middle and upper classes," he observes, to construct narratives of their own success "rather than having the media and society do it for us." (Oct.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Conley, a sociology professor, brings to his analysis of race a unique experience in the social and racial maze of New York City. Conley grew up in a Manhattan housing project that was predominantly black and Hispanic. Yet his minority white status offered a perspective and insight into the analysis of American race and class conflict. Conley found himself placed with Asian students on a higher academic track in elementary school, later migrated downtown to the Village with rich white students in junior high school, and was finally placed in one of the more selective public high schools. Throughout his personal journey, he learns that class and race are interwoven in a complex social fabric making it somewhat difficult to determine which is the dominant factor. While Conley appears to maintain close personal friendships with minorities, his whiteness still provides him with opportunities not available to his black and Hispanic neighbors. Conley's perspective on his youth is likely reconstructive and colored by preferences. Yet his book offers a clarity and simplicity that is insightful and raises concerns of a more universal significance. Vernon Ford
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Dalton Conley did not just write this book, he lived this book.
JMack
We live in a world that delights in reminding us of these differences so often that a heartfelt story like this one can really suffer.
"afakeplastictree"
Conley peppers his writing with both gravity and wit, humor and serious reflection.
RCM

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

73 of 84 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 21, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I found this book both conmfusing and troubling. As a black man who grew up on the Lower East Side of New York, I find conley's observations out of sync with my own. First of all: the Masaryk Towers--the "project" where he lived--was not a PUBLIC housing project, nor was it low income. Its population was far more mixed than the projects where I grew up. His stories, while well written at times, seem forced--as if to prove a point: white people have privileges that black people do not. I think we know this already.
As a person of color, I felt a bit hurt by the book's constant opposition between white sucess and black failure. If it's stereotypes the author is trying to attack, he sure doesn't succeed. Black people are type cast in this racial drama. My life growing up was filled with rituals, joy, ideas. His picture of black life is filled with anger, tragedy, and sadness. Where is the positive, complex side of black life on the Lower East Side.
As for the book's title: I've never called ANYONE honky. Was Conley called honky? The title of the book--like so many of Conley's stories--typecasts black people in a confusing and troubling way. Our lives are as complicated as white people's. I wish this book had shown this. Too bad. I think Conley means well. He just doesn't get it.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
38 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Holt on January 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
I found this to be an interesting and frustrating book. Dalton is a decent, though self-indulgent writer, who is able to create good narrative momentum. He has some interesting if not very deep things to say about race and class and childhood. But everything positive about the book was deeply undermined for me because it contains a great deal of factual error and distortion. I know this because my family figures prominently in his story. He was my brother's best friend during a critical period of their childhoods, which Dalton recounts at considerable length. And much of what he says is simply wrong. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that he wrote things as he remembers them and did not deliberately embellish the story. But the inaccuracies are significant because they pertain to the very heart of what he is trying to say. When Dalton transferred to PS41, he moved into a very different socioeconomic sphere, and the contrast between his earlier experiences and the new world he entered affected him deeply. Those contrasts--and the meanings he draws from them--are a great deal of what he tries to make sense of in the book. And that is what makes his inaccuracies so troubling. The portrait he paints of my family is of an extremely privileged, wealthy clan of economic and cultural elitists. That makes a better story, but it is also false. It makes me wonder just how accurate his other memories are. Is what he says about other people, places, and experiences as distorted as what he says about my family? His book is a clear lesson in just how subjective and unreliable memoirs are as sources of information about anything or anyone other than their authors. If you read this book, you'll know what Dalton thinks his childhood was like. No more, no less.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 23, 2003
Format: Paperback
About midway through his excellent, humorous and poignant memoir of growing up white in the mostly minority inner-city that comprises the edges of Manhattan's Lower East Side, Dalton Conley strives to comprehend the forces that enabled him, unaccompanied by his non-white peers, to transcend the urban blight that characterized both the outer and inner landscapes of those living in his neighborhood. "I'll never know whether it was my mother's protectiveness, my expectations and aspirations, or simply my race that spared me from a worse fate," writes Conley. "I will never know the true cause and effect in the trajectory of my life. And maybe it is better this way. I can believe what I want to believe. This is the privilege of the middle and upper classes in America - the right to make up the reasons things turn out the way they do, to construct our own narratives rather than having the media and society do it for us." Honky, at its core, is Conley's construction of his own narrative, a thoughtful examination of the trajectories that were at force in his childhood, as well as a personal and moving account of his gradual childhood acknowledgement of the significance of his whiteness and the privileges of race and class while growing up in multiple, unequal worlds. Clearly his book has a lot to teach - and it does - but in a thoughtful and non-preachy manner.Read more ›
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "afakeplastictree" on July 19, 2003
Format: Paperback
I would ordinarily give this book 4 stars, since I really like to reserve a 5 for something truely exceptional, but I feel that this book became all it really could have become. Essentially, that is an interesting (if not gripping) tale of white guilt linked to the oppression of minorities and the lower classes. I have to admit- the subject is trite and it loses something because of it. We live in a world that delights in reminding us of these differences so often that a heartfelt story like this one can really suffer. But it shouldn't have to. What we have here is a genuine, relativly sober account of just what it feels like to grow up white, poor, and, strangely, a minority. This book is NOT written for those who have suffered under racial prejudice or financial difficulty. This book is for the upper and middle class white people who have not experienced anything like this before. It is an eye-opener to the generally sheltered and privilaged. This is where it can do some serious good. I would not recommend this book to those who harbor the "they did it to themselves" additude about the lower class. If you come from this mindset, put on your thinking cap and come in with an OPEN MIND. Everything in this story comes together beautifully, and Conley does an admirable job at crushing the countless events of his childhood into a handfull of poignant and important experiences that serve to entertain and teach all at once. You will walk away from this book with a deeper appreciation and understanding for those individuals so often scoffed at and deemed worthless, stupid, lazy, if not all three. From an asthetic standpoint, this book is short and fast enough to pack a punch and take little enough time to churn-out more than enough in return for your services. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TO THE WHITE, WEALTHY AND SHELTERED YOUTH OF OUR AMERICAN SUBURBS. If you are one of these, you know it well, and should really give this book a try. I would know: I am one.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search