Born a Crime Characters
by Trevor Noah

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Born a Crime Characters

Born a Crime is the memoir of Trevor Noah. Therefore, he can be considered the main character. The memoir follows Trevor's early life, from birth to around the time he starts to become successful in his career as a comedian. The unique struggles of growing up mixed race in apartheid South Africa, the challenges of poverty, and the various hustles that Trevor engages in to survive are documented throughout this story.

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Patricia, Trevor's mother, is a central figure throughout the memoir. She is a no nonsense woman, who cares deeply for her children and makes countless sacrifices for them. She is fiercely independent and does not care for what others might think of her flaunting the rules of society. Additionally, her Christian faith is deeply important to her and she feels that Jesus is her guide in all things.

Robert Noah is Trevor's father. He is a Swiss-German man living in South Africa. He is described as being private and soft-spoken. Trevor does not spend much of his childhood with him but does relate a meaningful visit when he was a young adult.

Abel is Patricia's boyfriend and later, her husband. He works as a mechanic but often struggles through difficult financial times. He is prone to alcoholism, jealousy, and violent mood swings which he takes out on the rest of the family, particularly Patricia.

Noah has two younger half-brothers, Andrew and Isaac. Noah is fiercely protective of them.

Many members of Noah's extended family on his mother's side have small roles in the book, including his uncle Velile, his aunt Sibongile, his grandfather Temperance, and his blind great-grandmother Koko. They make up the household that Noah lived in when he was a very young child.

Zaheera is a girl at Trevor's school. Even though he has an intense crush on her, Trevor is too scared to do anything about it. Instead, he settles on being her friend, though it constantly tears him up inside. It is not until after Zaheera moves to America that Trevor learns that she also had feelings for him.

We also get to know some of Trevor's friends, particularly those who help him in his pirated CD business, such as Bongani and Tom, and those in his party crew, particularly the peculiarly named dancer, Hitler.


Characters in Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood include Trevor Noah, his family, and the people around him.

Trevor Noah is the author of the book. He's currently a comedian who does standup and hosts The Daily Show on Comedy Central. The book details his childhood in South Africa. His birth was a literal crime because, under Apartheid, it was illegal for a European man to have a child with a native woman. He opens the book by explaining that his mother threw him out of a moving car when he was nine years old because they were being kidnapped.

Patricia Nombuyiselo Noah is Trevor's mother. She's a...

(The entire section is 740 words.)