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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Thurman Couch, February 12, 2001. Interview K-0537. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Anger at racist treatment

Couch reveals that the racism he experienced growing up in Chapel Hill made him very angry—so angry he left town and resolved never to return. He recalls economic discrimination and racial slurs. Unfortunately, the tape ended before Couch could finish discussing his frustrations.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Thurman Couch, February 12, 2001. Interview K-0537. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

TC: Sure. He was reading it from a script. Here was bad boy Thurman. I was a bad boy. Very religious now, I’m probably more happy about my spiritual life today than I am about anything else. RG: Do you think that that keeps some of the anger down? TC: Well you know, I was angry for a very long time. I said I would never come back to North Carolina and live as a, um. I moved to New York and L.A. and different places, I never wanted to be called boy again under no circumstances. I wasn’t going to be talked to as if I was an animal while I worked. You know, ‘cause when you, I had to get a better job because I wanted to play football, so I had to go do like ?, ‘cause they paid about twice as much money as working washing dishes in a restaurant. You know, they treat you like, hurry baby, run, come on there, looky here, hey, hey. That type of thing. Or come on boy, what are you doing. So, so um, yeah. It, it had some wear and tear on me, and I was very…then when I got to college I realized that, you know, you were just a piece of meat again. So I got angry again, you know, and again I got angry in the pros, they going to play the blacks less. You always gotta be less, no matter how good you are , you always (tape runs out)