The Sixties, in America, was famously known as the years of the Cultural Revolution. It was a socially and politically chaotic period for America. In Toni Cade Bambara’s short story, “The Lesson”, she exposes the injustices and inequalities imposed on African Americans of that time. “…she’s boring us silly about what things cost and what our parents make… and how money ain’t divided up right in this country. And then… about we all poor and live in the slums” (Bambara 137).
"The Lesson" by Toni Cade Bambara is not just a spirited story about a poor girl out of place in an expensive toy store, it is a social commentary. "The Lesson" is a story about one African-American girl's struggle with her growing awareness of class inequality. The character Miss Moore introduces the facts of social inequality to a distracted group of city kids, of whom Sylvia, the main character, is the most cynical. Flyboy, Fat Butt, Junebug, Sugar, Rosie, Sylvia and the rest think of Miss Moore as an unsolicited educator, and Sylvia would rather be doing anything else than listening to her. The conflict between Sylvia and Miss Moore, "This
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
When Ms. Moore, Sylvia and the group of kids were in toy store the kids perspective about social class changes, the prices of toys were so expensive it makes the kids to begin to think about life as evident said by Sylvia “...we start down the block and she gets ahead which is O.K.by me cause I’m
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 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
The Lesson, by Toni Cade Bambara, portrays a group of children living in the slums of New York City around 1972. They seem to be content living in poverty in some very unsanitary conditions. One character, Miss Moore, the children’s self appointed mentor, takes it upon herself to further their education during the summer months. She feels this is her civic duty because she is educated. She used F.A.O. Schwarz, a very expensive toystore, to teach them a lesson and inspire them to strive for success and attempt to better themselves and their situations.
Imagine living your whole life thinking you had it good, a house, toys, etc. However, one day you find out that to some people your life seems like poverty. In the story “The Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara, the main character Sylvia, a 14-year-old New York native, is introduced as tough hard-headed character who lives in the ghetto. In order to survive the ghetto Sylvia had to act and be tough causing here to develop into a hard-headed individual. Miss Moore, an educated takes Sylvia and her class on a field trip to visit a toy store unlike anything they had ever seen. The reason why she does this is because she knows that the kids can relate to toys and loves playing with them; however, her main purpose is to use toys as a way to teach a lesson. After visiting this toy store, called F.A.O Schwarz, the children’s view of the world is changed especially for Sylvia. She learns that the world she lives is un fair because not everyone is seen as equal. She learns that inequality exists and its happening to her.
The diverse and powerful topic of socioeconomic can be explored to develop characters and the overall theme of a story. Two literary stories in particular, “The Lesson” by Toni Bambara and “The Stolen Party” by Liliana Heker, have used socioeconomic status to create a second theme of self-discovery. The main characters in each of these two stories are young girls who discover their adult selves by the end. A low socioeconomic status was a part of each character’s character development in “The Lesson” and “The Stolen Party”, which ultimately forced them down a path of self-discovery. Good Start
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
We immediately learn that Miss Moore is not the average Harlem teacher. She is educated herself, along with being very opinionated. The children explain that she has nappy
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.
“The Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara, is a short story with many different character traits. Miss Moore is a person in the short story who has many different traits. Miss Moore teaches the kids the value of a dollar in a unique way. Miss More shows that she is caring, presentable (confident about her looks), and well educated teacher, who is trying to better the lives of the kids, through out the story. Miss Moore shows off her traits in many ways.
about how their lives differ from those of rich white children, nonetheless Miss Moore wants the
“The Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara is not just about a sassy, defiant, ungrateful poor girl that is out of place in an overpriced expensive toy store. “The Lesson” is a short story about a young black girl who is struggling with her increasing awareness of class inequality. When Sylvia’s new neighbor, Miss. Moore, a smart college educated woman introduces the reality of social inequality to Sylvia and her group of friends, they become cynical. Sylvia has always known in the back of her mind that she was poor, but never really let it bother her until she sees her disadvantages in glaring contrast with the luxuries of the wealthy.