Meredith Struggling at Ole Miss

Nov. 10, 1962 - James Meredith said today he had fallen behind in his work at the University of Mississippi and would seek help from a tutor. He attributed his scholastic difficulties to the “abnormal conditions” of his attendance at the university. The 29-year-old Negro was the first member of his race to enroll in a white public education institution in Mississippi. Mr. Meredith said he had found it hard to study because of demands made on his time by noncollegiate matters. Further, he said, he has been upset by reports that his wife and father have been harassed. He recognized, he said, that he is a “symbol” of the Negroes’ struggle against segregation. He said this meant that if “I drink one milk instead of two in the school cafeteria, it gets reported. Every time I walk out of a classroom or anywhere else, there’s a television camera or a photographer or a newsman.” “Symbols can’t learn,” he said. “Only individuals can learn.”

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