MONKEY ON MY BACK by Wenzell Brown


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A concerned reporter's experience with and examination of teen-age addiction begins when he finds Dave, the son of a rich friend, with a monkey on his back (or unable to get a ""fix"") trying to lift his typewriter. When Dave's body is next found in an alleyway in the Bronx- Brown follows up on his death and his search takes him to Harlem, to the Negro and Puerto Rican slums where boys and girls are peddling and buying drugs in the schoolyards and on the street corners. His interest in Hector and Patrick and Pepe and Rosa, whose stories are told here, led to an involvement in their lives- in the attempt to salvage them after a cure in Lexington, Ky., by finding homes- and jobs- where the threat of reversion was eliminated. But although he failed (and the statistics here on workable cures hold little hope) he is still working against the widening record of addiction and the physical deterioration, moral delinquency which are all part of the blurred background of the junkie... A sincerity, rather than a tabloid sensationalism, should help to bring this to the attention of agencies and individuals engaged in countering this problem.

Pub Date: March 13th, 1953
Publisher: Greenberg