Study Guide

George Levitan in Black Like Me

George Levitan

This guy is the owner of Sepia magazine and is the one who approves this whole crazy experiment in the first place. Of course, he tells Griffin that it's dangerous, but he doesn't try to stop him from getting this juicy story.

Just like East and Griffin, he stands on the side of equality when it comes to matters of journalism. Griffin says:

A large, middle-aged man, he long ago won my admiration by offering equal job opportunities to members of any race, choosing according to their qualifications and future potentialities. (2.1)

Unlike East and Griffin, Levitan somehow manages to both be a good human and not be ostracized. His business is actually worth over $1 million. Now that's a model to imitate! Just like East, Griffin makes sure that we know Levitan is a nice guy. He tells us:

I drove to his house, arriving there in mid-afternoon. His door was always open, so I walked in and called him. An affectionate man, he embraced me, offered me coffee and had me take a seat. (2.2)

If East is an example of the bad ending activists could face, then Levitan is the opposite. He's nice, successful, and gosh darn it people like him. He got the happy ending to East's horror movie. He also serves as a ray of sunshiney hope in an otherwise drearily overcast novel—if Levitan can be unbiased and successful, then there's hope for America yet. Because it sure seems that Levitan, with his wide open door (at work and home), his coffee-making prowess and his cash-money, is living the American Dream.