Essay on Black Women and the Crooked Room

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Quiz 2- Question 1 The study Melissa Perry-Harris uses as an analogy of the “crooked room” is derived from the field-dependent study which argues people are influenced by the clues in the environment to position themselves and how they people adjust themselves to fit their environment. The Field-Dependent and Field-Independent Cognitive Styles and Their Educational Implications, by Herman Witkin, Carol Moore, Donald Goodenough, Patricia Cox, in 1977 show that field-dependent people make greater use of external social symbols, but only when the situation is vague and these symbols provide information that helps to remove the ambiguity of the situation. In Sister Citizen, Melissa Perry-Harris uses the analogy of the “crooked room” to…show more content…
According to Harris Perry, in Sister Citizen, there are three essential elements in the emotion of shame (104). The first element of shame is social; the fear of embarrassment or humiliation around others in our community. For Black women the social element of shame may cause all-encompassing feelings of guilt, especially when the possibility of public exposure by others to those who are family or close personally. The next element of shame is global. In Black women it can cause feelings of weakness or being inadequate as a person as a whole. According to Harris-Perry, global shame extends beyond a single incident and becomes an evaluation of self (104). The third element of shame is withdrawal, both psychologically and physically. Out of the three, withdrawal can be more insidious than the other two elements of shame because it can be debilitating. Physical withdrawal can cause Black women make themselves smaller for example, by not speaking up, and withdrawing into themselves by isolating themselves from others. Psychological withdrawal can cause lack of self-esteem, social disorders, and substance abuse to self-medicate in order to cope with feelings of shame. Other issues of shame are those constructed by the Jim Crow system. For example, African Americans being a “shamed race” by being forced into
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