In this quotation Sugar realizes what Miss Moore set out to teach the lower classed and deprived children, her goal was to open their eyes and make them aware of how much more there is out there then making pocket change. 'What kinda work they do and how they live and how come we ain't in on it? Where we are is who we are, Miss Moore always pointin out. But it don't necessarily have to be that way, she always adds then waits for somebody to say that poor people have to wake up and demand their share of the pie and place,'; (Bambara 452). With her eyes wide open and with her mind curious and educated, Sugar and her friends realize that in order for them to get some where in life they have to work at it, but not as in individual but as a whole, a class. The only way for them to make a difference to change societies view of their class and become part of the rest of societies.
Point of view is an essential element to a reader's comprehension of a story. The point of view shows how the narrator thinks, speaks, and feels about any particular situation. In Toni Cade Bambara's "The Lesson," the events are told through the eyes of a young, mischievous girl named Sylvia who lives in a lower class neighborhood. The reader gets a limited point of view of view because the events are told strictly by Sylvia. This fact can influence the reader to see things just as she does. The strong language gives an unfamiliar reader an illustration of how people in the city speak. Bambara does this to show the reader that kids from lower class neighborhoods are affected by their environment due to lack of education and discipline,
The major theme of the story was creating awareness in adolescents about what life has to offer. The nature of human beings of accepting the realities of life to such an extent that apathy and lethargy sets in, is what proves to be destructive for the social fabric of today’s world. In this stagnation, Mrs. Moore provides the impetus required for people to realize their god given right to something better. We are told that Mrs. Moore has a college degree, is well dressed most of the times, and has a good command on her language. She seems to be a kind of a person who has seen the world. She has experienced life, and wants to use that experience in providing the children with an opportunity to broaden
Toni Cade Bambara addresses how knowledge is the means by which one can escape out of poverty in her story The Lesson. In her story she identifies with race, economic inequality, and literary epiphany during the early 1970’s. In this story children of African American progeny come face to face with their own poverty and reality. This realism of society’s social standard was made known to them on a sunny afternoon field trip to a toy store on Fifth Avenue. Through the use of an African American protagonist Miss Moore and antagonist Sylvia who later becomes the sub protagonist and White society the antagonist “the lesson” was ironically taught. Sylvia belong to a lower economic class, which affects her views of herself within highlights the
In "The Lesson" it talks about a group of children who lives in the slum of New York City in the 1970s. Sylvia the main character is ignorant, rude and stubborn. In the summer all she wanted to do is have fun with her friends however, Miss Moore a well educated black woman took it upon her self to take Sylvia and her friends to a toy store called F.O.A schwarz in manhattan. On the trip Miss Moore is trying to show them a different world , the "real world" something the children are not accustom to seeing. She's helping them to figure their identity and how they are as a person. At the end Sylvia realizes that she is a strong and intelligent individual.
Some experiences can change people as individuals and how they view things. The process of people growing up can take time but when a transformation occurs it can be difficult to handle. Sylvia, the narrator in Toni Cade Bambara's "The Lesson," learns a lesson about social class how the rich are different from poor ,she realizes that the money rich people spend for their kids toys can feed a whole household of poor families.In the process, she loses some part of her pride that characterizes her childhood because she thought she was living a good life till she realizes that rich kids toys can feed her entire household so she begins to look for hints or ways of being wealth so that she can have better life than her family. She
She inspired the kids to learn there is much more about the world than outside of where they lived. On the day, miss more rounded up neighborhood kids and is going to take them to A fancy toys store at fifty-seventh street. Miss Moore knows that this will be a new experience for the children who don’t have this in their neighborhood, and will be excited by the unexpected items that they had never seen before. In “The Lesson,” Miss Moore attempts to teach the children about savage inequalities that exist in their socioeconomic status. However, Miss Moore gives her five dollar bill to pay the taxi to a toy store, where they wonder at the wealthy people live. Miss Moore told them to go in but Sylvia immediately uncomfortable there. Sylvia was unhappy that miss Moore brought them here. The children see a microscope, paperweight, and sailboats cost $1,195. Everything in the store was high price and the kids shocked by looking at the cost, and to teach them a lesson and inspire them to fight for success and try to do better for themselves. When the arrived back to Harlem, miss Moore asks the children what they thought the store. Eventually, sugar reply and said that the cost of the toy sailboat could feed all of them. Again she asks the children what this inequality says about society. Sugar
Originally, in “The Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara, Sylvia shows signs of detachment towards Miss Moore due to
The Lesson takes place in New York?s inner city. The fictional story begins with a group of poor, uneducated, lower class city kids standing in front of a mailbox, preparing themselves for another day of being taught by Mrs. Moore. Mrs. Moore felt that it was her duty to help underprivileged children learn because she
Toni Cade Bambara’s "The Lesson" revolves around a young black girl’s struggle to come to terms with the role that economic injustice, and the larger social injustice that it constitutes, plays in her life. Sylvia, the story’s protagonist, initially is reluctant to acknowledge that she is a victim of poverty. Far from being oblivious of the disparity between the rich and the poor, however, one might say that on some subconscious level, she is in fact aware of the inequity that permeates society and which contributes to her inexorably disadvantaged economic situation. That she relates poverty to shame—"But I feel funny, shame. But what I got to be
In “The Lesson,” the author shows how one can alter their circumstances. The story is being told by a young girl name Sylvia; through her observation of living in Harlem, readers are able to get a glance of what kind of environment she and the other children lived in. Sylvia was known to be outspoken and unruly but by Miss Moore taking her and her peers under her wing she made a change for the better. Miss Moore took the children on a trip to an expensive store in Manhattan called F.A.O Swartz where the children saw a variety of toys with expensive price tags. Miss Moore wanted the children to see how wealthy people lived and that the other opportunities out there. This short story shows how the environment contributes to ones determination of achieving the American Dream. Although, Miss Moore was well adjusted to this environment, the
In the story it is summer time and Sylvia is on summer vacation, “And school suppose to let up in summer I heard, but she don’t never let us” (Bambara 147). Summer vacation for Sylvia is spending time at the park, at the show, and at the pool, and as Sylvia proclaims “its puredee hot” (Bambara 147). Sylvia's first thought is further reflected in her desire to “go to the pool or the show where it's cool”(Bambara 147), where she would just let life happen to her, and never get worked up and angry over the social injustice created by class distinctions. When Sylvia did not got the satisfactory answer from Miss Moore for the price of real boat her anger was spotted, “if you gonna mess up a perfectly good swim day least you could do is have some answers” (Bambara 149). This emphasize that she want the answer of every injustice that she is facing in her life. Just as Miss Moore is trying to create a feeling of “ain't nobody gonna beat me at nuthin” (Bambara 151), she is also trying to provoke the anger which is necessary for the children to get motivated.
Toni Cade Bambara's The Lesson is a very well written piece of history. This is a story from yesterday, when Harlem children didn't have good education or the money to spring for it. Bambara's tale tells about a little girl who doesn't really know how to take it when a good teacher finally does come along. This girl's whole life is within the poverty stricken area and she doesn't see why she must try hard. The teacher, Miss Moore, shows them what it is all about by taking them to a rich toy store, one in which a single toy costs more than year's supply of food.
Sylvia’s life in the story “The Lesson” brings me back to my own childhood in many ways. As a young girl I grew up in an uneducated, low income household. I too, knew as a young girl, we were poor. I never let it bother me, I never thought there was something wrong with being poor. Living in low income apartment housing with many children just like myself was the norm in my world. We ran the neighborhood, had tons of adventures, and yet we were content with our lives just the way they were. As I grew older and began spending time with my Aunt Julie, she helped me realized there was a whole other world out there I knew nothing about.