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Samuel L. Jackson Talks Childhood And Growing Up During Segregation

02/09/2015 05:44 pm ET | Updated Feb 16, 2015

There's a never a dull moment with Samuel L. Jackson and the award-winning actor proved that yet again during his appearance on Monday's episode of "Live! With Kelly and Michael" where things got really personal.

Jackson, who is promoting his latest film “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” took a few moments to reflect on some of his childhood memories and what life was like growing up in Chattanooga, Tennessee during the 1950s.

In doing so, he talked about some of the strong influences he had in his life including his Aunt Etna, an elementary school teacher, who taught Jackson how to read at the early age of two.

“She forced me to do a lot of things that I didn’t want to do when I was a kid. But of the things she made me do was read. So I was reading by the time I was two,” he admitted. “She used to take me to school, which was an interesting kind of thing because it was the country. My grandmother worked, she was a domestic, she was like ‘The Help.’ And my grandfather worked at a hotel during the day. So she [Aunt Etna] took me to school with her.”

“So when I was two, I sat back in her room…so when a kid couldn’t answer a question in her class she would go, ‘Sam…’ and I would answer the question, and then I would have to fight all lunch time, because all the fourth graders would go, ‘oh, you think you’re smart.’…and I’d have to fight because she made me answer questions, made them look dumb. So I was a good fighter and a smart kid.”

Aside from his experiences in school, Jackson also weighed in on what life was like growing up in a city still saturated by segregation at the time -- and the lessons he learned that he'll never forget.

“I learned a lot of lessons that most people don’t have to learn today, or shouldn’t have to learn,” Jackson said. “But I learned how to conduct myself around the superior race in an interesting sort of way. You don’t look people in the eye, but I did because I didn’t know any better.”

Check out more of Samuel L. Jackson’s interview segment in the clip above.

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