We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
The Measure of a Man: A Spiritual Autobiography | [Sidney Poitier]

The Measure of a Man: A Spiritual Autobiography

In this luminous memoir, a true American icon looks back on his celebrated life and career. His body of work is arguably the most morally significant in cinematic history, and the power and influence of that work are indicative of the character of the man behind the many storied roles. Sidney Poitier here explores these elements of character and personal values to take his own measure: as a man, as a husband and a father, and as an actor.
Regular Price:$19.93
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

In this luminous memoir, a true American icon looks back on his celebrated life and career. His body of work is arguably the most morally significant in cinematic history, and the power and influence of that work are indicative of the character of the man behind the many storied roles. Sidney Poitier here explores these elements of character and personal values to take his own measure: as a man, as a husband and a father, and as an actor.

Poitier credits his parents and his childhood on tiny Cat Island in the Bahamas for equipping him with the unflinching sense of right and wrong and of self-worth that he has never surrendered and that have dramatically shaped his world. Without television, radio, and material distractions to obscure what matters most, he could enjoy the simple things, endure the long commitments, and find true meaning in his life.

Poitier was uncompromising as he pursued a personal and public life that would honor his upbringing and the invaluable legacy of his parents. Just a few years after his introduction to indoor plumbing and the automobile, Poitier broke racial barrier after racial barrier to launch a pioneering acting career. Committed to the notion that what one does for a living articulates who one is, Poitier played only forceful and affecting characters who said something positive, useful, and lasting about the human condition.

Here is Poitier's own introspective look at what has informed his performances and his life. Poitier explores the nature of sacrifice and commitment, price and humility, rage and forgiveness, and paying the price for artistic integrity. What emerges is a picture of a man in the face of limits - his own and the world's. A triumph of the spirit, The Measure of a Man captures the essential Poitier.

Actor and icon: listen to more about Sidney Poitier.
Or check out more selections from Oprah's Book Club.

©2000 Sidney Poitier; (P)2000 HarperCollins Publishers

What the Critics Say

  • Oprah's Book Club Selection
  • Audio Publishers Association 2001 Award Winner, Nonfiction, Unabridged
  • Grammy Winner, Best Spoken Word Album, 2001

"Moving...Poitier writes with vivid emotion about [past] clashes and brings them blazingly alive." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (499 )
5 star
 (228)
4 star
 (133)
3 star
 (84)
2 star
 (38)
1 star
 (16)
Overall
4.3 (172 )
5 star
 (101)
4 star
 (38)
3 star
 (21)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (6)
Story
4.5 (172 )
5 star
 (121)
4 star
 (26)
3 star
 (16)
2 star
 (5)
1 star
 (4)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Ann Staunton, VA, USA 03-08-07
    Ann Staunton, VA, USA 03-08-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Mixed Feelings"

    I was torn between really liking this and not really liking this recording. I loved that the author narrated it himself, that was wonderful. I just couldn't decide if the author had something significant to say about the Measure of a Man or whether he was simply writing a book to talk about himself or to be heard on certain topics. I would not recommend this book to anyone however I can't say it's a bad book either.
    If you know all of his work you probably will enjoy the chapters he talks specifically about how the movie came to be and how he got the part in it.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cheryl LangwarrinAustralia 10-17-08
    Cheryl LangwarrinAustralia 10-17-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "the most beautiful man"

    Everyone, do yourself a favour and download this beautiful book. It is such a treasure to listen to, i just loved every second of it. I loved it so much that i have bought the hard copy to read again at pleasure. Cheryl

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Randy Ramona, CA, USA 08-08-07
    Randy Ramona, CA, USA 08-08-07 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    35
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Good book on an admired actor"

    I remember as a kid thinking that the movie "To Sir with Love" was a great movie. This book was a short review of his life and a great reflection on his childhood and his parents. I am not much of a movie buff and generally do not even know actors names, however, Sidney Poitier has always drawn some admiration. I would recommend this book for anyone that is a fan or anyone looking for a good short read to reflect on a "simpler" time.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lucy Wimberley, TX, USA 04-19-07
    Lucy Wimberley, TX, USA 04-19-07 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    20
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "So satisfying"

    Plenty of insider experiences vault this life story over more hurdles than most Hollywood stars face on or off the screen. Sidney Poitier's childhood and early life would make a decent movie but even Superman as director couldn't reveal the steel in this man's soul. Poitier's rich voice delivers one of the best autobiographies to come along in ages.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alphonse Potomac, MD, USA 04-17-07
    Alphonse Potomac, MD, USA 04-17-07 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    32
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Wonderful Memoirs"

    This book provides wonderful insights into the thoughts and personality of Sidney Poitier and I think is significantly enhanced by the fact that it is read by him. The book also works as a contrast in his impoverished up-bringing on Cat island and the difficulties he faces in moving to the US.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Regina Moscow, PA, USA 03-03-07
    Regina Moscow, PA, USA 03-03-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "The Measure of A Man"

    This is a magnificient format to enjoy this book. The wonderful story-telling of Sidney Poitier along with his distinctive voice captures your attention like you're sitting with a wise friend and hearing his compelling stories of the past. It's inspiring.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lorraine Braithwaite-Harte 01-30-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narration"

    Wonderfully narrated with passion & very insightful into the life of a man I have admired since childhood!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Babatunde 01-17-15
    Babatunde 01-17-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book"

    Excellent book I highly recommend it to anyone interested in true greatness without losing your soul. Great work indeed. Thanks

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dr Frank Coraopolis, PA, United States 09-15-14
    dr Frank Coraopolis, PA, United States 09-15-14 Member Since 2011

    Lover of life and lover of books! I read/listen to a wide range (many) but my favorite non fiction are self-help and autobiographies.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    55
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    209
    61
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    7
    20
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Intriguing history of a great actor"

    First, his voice is amazing! The tell of his youth and the struggles to build him into the man he became is amazing. As others stated, it seemed he rambled on and on diminishing the value of the point. There were times when I kept checking how much was left of the book. Overall, the book is very good and I rated it 4 stars but if 3.5 were available that is my selection. I wanted to learn about a man who had tremendous impact on the culture and history of this nation which is why I listened to the book. Additionally, it was recommended as a must listen. I wouldn't say it is a must listen but it is worth listening to at least once. I wouldn't listen to it a second time and would recommend it as a listen for those who enjoy learning about successful people who paved the path in history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lynn Orting, WA, United States 10-08-13
    Lynn Orting, WA, United States 10-08-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    10
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Mixed review"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I liked the first part best when he was telling stories of his life. I didn't like the latter part so much when he was "lecturing" about morals, etc. I felt he adequately made his point with the stories of his life, the rest I felt was filler.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Sidney Poitier? Why or why not?

    Yes, I originally wanted to purchase the book about his learning to read.


    What does Sidney Poitier bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He has an amazing voice and presence and it think books are always better served, when read by their authors.


    Was The Measure of a Man worth the listening time?

    Yes, Mostly.


    Any additional comments?

    Mr. Poitier lived an exceptional life, and I really enjoyed learning more about it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.