In her essay “The Fourth of July”, Audre Lorde described the enlighteningly awful experience of the reality of racism she had during her first trip to Washington D.C. as a child. While Lorde’s older sister had been rejected by her high school from traveling with the rest of the graduating class because she was black, Lorde’s parents decided to take a family trip to the nation’s capital on their own to compensate for such an injustice. Nevertheless, the reality of racism and discrimination the family felt while on their trip foiled their attempt to ignore and overcome such oppression, and led Lorde to view the trip as a frustrating experience. By employing this personal anecdote of her family’s replacement graduation trip for her older sister, Lorde successfully conveyed the impossibility of pretending to live in ignorance of racism and discrimination, and powerfully presented her anger at her family, the black community, and all of American society at trying to do so instead of addressing these problems. In presenting herself as a child on the verge of adulthood, Lorde indicated to the reader that the things she learned at this time would be pivotal and important for the rest of her life. For example, at the beginning of her essay, Lorde wrote that her trip to Washington D.C. was “on the edge of the summer when I was supposed to stop being a child” (221). In this way, Lorde’s trip to the nation’s capital and her experiences of discrimination there provided an intellectual
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Racism is a widely discussed topic, and everyone agrees that it is something that only causes harm. People with racist views can view others from other groups as people who are lesser than them and might use physically actions to show their dislike. In response to that, more and more people are having their own ideas of how to identify and end racism. For example, Kwame Anthony Appiah who brought out the idea of extrinsic racism, the perspective of utilitarianism, and the Kantian ethic are views that show why racism is wrong and how it can be ended.
The diversity between Americans has always been evident, and not just by the skin tone or religion, but also by their backgrounds, as well as how their lives are like today. Especially in African Americans and those who wanted to change the ways of religion, and the prejudice against them continues to stick, even today.
He wants his readers to imagine the pain and humiliation of the ill treatment that African Americans endure on a daily basis. King writes of vicious mobs lynching people’s mothers and fathers, policemen killing people’s brothers and sisters, a man and his wife not receiving the proper respect they deserve because of their skin color, and the notion that African Americans feel insignificant within their communities; this is why these peaceful demonstrators of whom the clergymen attack “find it difficult to wait” (King, 20). However, King believes that soon, injustice will be exposed, like “a boil that can never be cured so long as it is covered up” (King, 30). This vivid description helps arouse an emotional response, driving shame into the hearts of his white readers.
In the essay “The Fourth of July,” Audre Lorde expresses that she has “always hated the Fourth of July, even before she came to realize the travesty such a celebration was for black people” (10) and in the process, she tells of the irony behind the celebration. Lorde develops her ideas by telling a childhood memory of her and her family visiting Washington D.C. where she is faced with the harsh reality of unequal rights for African Americans. Using personal accounts from her trip, she discloses the racism she faced in order to show the causticity of The Independence Day celebration. Lorde’s ostensible audience is African Americans because she opens and closes the essay by directly addressing them and giving them the support that they need in
In “The Fourth of July” written by Audre Lorde, an author and poet who took it upon herself to confront and address issues of racism, she describes the time she took a trip during the summer to Washington, D.C., where she obtained her own memory and meaning of independence. In her essay she shares with readers an account of experiencing racism on a day of the celebration of freedom. Lorde conveys her anger regarding her parents avoidance of racism and more specifically how she felt about the people and society surrounding her by her usage of specific tone, the repetition of words, and irony.
Audre Lorde’s essay “The Fourth of July” explores a childhood family trip and the way it opened her eyes to racism in America. Lorde allows the reader to better understand her emotions in response to this by sharing specific details or language that conveys her idealized expectations of D.C., as well as her unawareness of racism she will find there. This allows the reader to empathize with her when she relates her naivety, ignorance, and uncertainty both before, after, and during her trip to D.C. During and after the trip, Lorde feels overcome by the suppressive authority of white people she perceives in the capital. Since she has not been uneducated on these subjects, Lorde feels overwhelmed by her new encounters there. Lorde’s enthusiastic mood before the trip, indicating her unawareness of what she will encounter, later dissolves into a sense confusion and exclusion from the wonderful things D.C. has to offer.
During the Civil Rights Era, many black power movements strived to prevent the New Jim Crow from happening. The black man was being oppressed during segregation and treated like animals. The white supremacy, only visualize African Americans as slaves, people who should not be a part of the United States. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X drove men and women to fight for his or her rights. However, that was not enough to stop the white supremacy from oppressing African Americans. The Civil Rights movement did put an end to public segregation. It did not put not put an end to the laws being made by the government, which is dominated by the white race. In the book, The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander discussed how the Civil Rights and black power movements helped African Americans gain their equal rights, but did not help to gain political power. Mass Incarceration is where the African Americans’ lives end because of the social structure created by the government. Blacks are mostly in the lower class because after the Great Depression, Roosevelt only created laws for whites. This allowed the white community to build and move out the cities into better neighborhoods. Leaving the black community behind. The government placed businesses and built big buildings to keep all the blacks in one place. Base on how the black community was viewed as a race and social status, gives this race a higher chance of being behind bars.
Michelle Alexander’s the new Jim Crow Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness examine the Jim Crow practices post slavery and the mass incarceration of African-American. The creation of Jim Crows laws were used as a tool to promote segregation among the minority and white American. Michelle Alexander’s the new Jim Crow Mass takes a look at Jim Crow laws and policies were put into place to block the social progression African-American from the post-slavery to the civil rights movement. Fast-forward to 2008 the election of Barack Obama certified that African-Americans were no longer viewed as second-class citizens instead African-Americans are equal to their white counterparts. However, Michelle Alexander
The famous Japanese proverb and image of the three wise monkeys “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” is interpreted in the Western world as a refusal to acknowledge the evil that occurs around us. In the autobiography, The Fourth of July, by Audre Lorde, she describes an event in her life in which she experienced racism. Lorde’s parents made sure their kids were sheltered from the racism going on in the world and kept them from seeing it. Audre Lorde encounters racism even though her parents tried to hide it from her, which shows how being sheltered from issues in the world can cause greater problems when they are faced.
The memoir “How It Feels to Be Colored Me” by Zora Neale Hurston, was first published in 1928, and recounts the situation of racial discrimination and prejudice at the time in the United States. The author was born into an all-black community, but was later sent to a boarding school in Jacksonville, where she experienced “race” for the first time. Hurston not only informs the reader how she managed to stay true to herself and her race, but also inspires the reader to abandon any form of racism in their life. Especially by including Humor, Imagery, and Metaphors, the author makes her message very clear: Everyone is equal.
Before using her Facebook as a means to connect young minds about civil rights movements and issues that still plagues the nation today, Sandra Bland used her social media like every other citizen. That is until just after Christmas of 2014 when she made the decision to speak up about “the economic crisis burdening young African Americans,” trying to, in her words, inform her readers about black history, or American history as she liked to describe it (Nathan). Sandra Bland, a 28 year old African American, had just received a job interview from her alma mater, Prairie View A&M University. Her life seemed to be going smoothly, just received a job offering, rekindled her relationship with her mother, and seemed optimistic about the future to
The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander tries to advance intellectual dialogue regarding mass incarceration in the United States. Alexander does this by carrying out a historical analysis of the process in which the correctional system controls African Americans through intentionally selected, and systematically sanctioned legal limits. In fact, the United States incarceration rate is not at peak by coincidence. Moreover, it is not coincidental that Black men and women make up the majority of this number. According to Alexander, this problem is a consequence of the “New Jim Crow” rules, which use racial stratification to eliminate black individuals in the legal sense. Black people and a small number of the Hispanic community face racial stratified laws when they face the justice system. This paper will support the claims that race is a major factor in the incarceration of black men in the United States, which includes the Jim Crow system, the slave system and the drag war. This process will also involve analyzing of some of the arguments presented within the book.
White privilege is the societal privileges that specifically benefit white people. White privilege is why white people can get pulled over by the police and escape a ticket with just a smile and apology. White privilege is also why whites are in charge of a company and they see a black person, they bypass the application. Whites carry a certain privilege not available to people of color. Marilyn Frye describes how whiteness is a form social and political power.
The book, The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander is about the mass incarceration of African Americans in the criminal justice system. It depicts individuals who were arrested on drug crimes. Because these individuals are labeled as criminals, it becomes difficult for them to find work, housing, and public assistance. (Alexander, 2010) The themes in this book include denial and ignorance, racism and violence, and drugs.
It was the first time Lorde was confronted with racism and her family’s reaction to it. They had to take a train to go to New York City and when it was time to eat, they were not allowed to enter the dining area so they had to eat in their seats. Her mother told her that it is better to eat home cooked food anyway. Audre Lorde did not question her mother since she knew her mother was right. Though her parents made the incident look okay, it deeply bothered Lorde. There was another incident when they arrived to D.C from New York City; when Audre’s family decided to get some ice cream treats from a drugstore, they were told to order their food and eat it outside because they were blacks. Her parents ignore the comment and left. Lorde was outrages by their reaction. She knew what was going on but she was not allowed to acknowledge this racism. She saw that her family was just as upset but they chose to ignore it and walk away, hoping for the racism to go away. These incidents were carved inside Lorde while growing up. It was a hard journey for her until she found a way to deal with it.