Autobiography/Memoir

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Little Big Man

Stanley J. Browne

2022

Stanley J. Browne is an actor, and he has been an actor all his life. Born into a Jamaican family in a London suburb, he began rehearsing for the role of survivor from an early age. From birth he knew nothing but a home filled with love and the vibrancy of a Caribbean culture, but this changes when his mother is diagnosed with schizophrenia.

In this honest and gripping memoir, Stanley reflects on a childhood and adolescence torn apart by mental disorder. Because of it, he has to adopt the mantle of ‘man of the house’. Forced to scavenge for food, and miss school to care for his three siblings, his life is further fragmented as they yo-yo in and out of the care system.

An intelligent and sensitive child, Stanley begins a descent into crime, heroin addiction and gang life. It is only when he is sent to a young offender’s institution that he slowly begins to turn his life around.

Set against a backdrop of 1970s poverty and racism, Little Big Man is a powerful story of generational trauma, and one man’s determination to heal the wounds of the past. Most of all, it is a book about belonging, and the search to find an authentic voice through the redemptive power of creativity and recovery.