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Viola Davis reveals painful past in her new memoir ‘Finding Me’

Renowned actress Viola Davis, in her recently published memoir titled ‘Finding Me’, has disclosed the painful experiences of her early life. The book, which was unveiled on April 26, 2022, delves into the chapters of her life characterised by poverty, emotional distress and abuse. Davis recounts the unsettling episodes from her past where she and her three elder sisters, Dianne, Anita, and Deloris, were subjected to sexual molestation by their own brother while living in their family apartment.

In her memoir, Davis also reveals the persistent infidelity and ill-treatment of her mother by her father. She draws upon memories of her father’s unhidden extramarital affairs and recalls meeting Patricia, a woman she describes as ‘big’, who was one of his mistresses. Unsettlingly, Davis suggests that her brother, like her father, also possessed an abusive personality. The sexual abuse inflicted on her and her sisters by their brother was deeply distressing, and they felt a profound discomfort following these incidents.

Davis also shares the struggles of her early life, born into a family with limited financial resources that restricted her access to higher education. However, she and her siblings, despite their circumstances, held a deep regard for education during their childhood in Central Falls, Rhode Island. Their understanding of the importance of advanced education was clear, although their pathway to achieving it was less so.

Their hopes for financial support for their education were revived when Dianne, the eldest among the siblings, was informed by a guidance counselor at Central Falls High School about the Upward Bound college access and preparation programme. This programme, funded at the federal level, is part of the TRIO initiatives, which also include Student Support Services. These initiatives were designed with the intention of assisting first-generation and low-income college students.

Davis and her sister availed themselves of these programmes, which substantially aided their educational journey. However, Davis also reflects on the societal response to victims and perpetrators of abuse, mentioning that victims were often labelled as ‘fast’ or ‘heifers’, while the abusers were dubbed ‘dirty old men’. Davis believes that this tendency to blame the victim and to normalise victimisation continues to persist in contemporary society. Continue to follow our reputable news site for any emerging news updates.


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