Brownies by ZZ Packer Essay

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The writer ZZ Packer’s short story, “Brownies,” is about a troop of African-American Girl Scouts from south Atlanta that takes a camping trip; unfortunately, almost instantly, imaginary tensions build up between them and Troop 909, a group of white girls; struggle that later in this story develops as the main external conflict. Arnetta and Octavia, appear as the leaders of the group, and insist that the 909 girls called one of their group a derogatory word which is the starting point of the conflict. Consequently, a confrontation rapidly takes place between the teams, but this quarrel turns awry when the African-American girls realize the white members of Troop 909 are developmentally disabled and it becomes clear to the reader that…show more content…
In this excerpt ZZ Packer clearly points out that the aversion the girls feel towards the whites is not based on their own experiences, but rather their families. According to their parents, dealing with “whites” was a problem every adult had to face. Lauren’s statement clearly exposes the young African-American girls’ lack of reasoning on racism, and thus portrays the parents as the responsible for the children’s behavior. Resentment on behalf of the parents did indeed have a huge impact in the brownies. Pursuing this situation further, racial segregation the African American brownies experienced in their communities, is the major cause of affliction in the young children. Lauren affirms: When you live in the suburbs of Atlanta, it was easy to forget about whites. Whites were like those pigeons: real and existing, but rarely seen or thought about…everyone had seen white girls and their mother coo-coing over dresses; everyone had gone to downtown library and seen white businessmen swish by importantly, wrists flexed in front of them to check the time as though they would change from Clark Kent into Superman…those images were a fleeing as cards shuffled in a deck, where as the ten white girls behind us were real and memorable (179). In this excerpt, whites are perceived as the superior race in an all-black
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