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The Poem Of 'Dothead'

Decent Essays
“Dothead”. This word is a racial slur that mocks the entire Indian culture. It is very clever of the author Amit Majmudar to title this poem of his “Dothead”. Throughout the poem the speaker’s classmates are mocking his culture, specifically the red dot that his mother and all of the other women in his culture wear on their foreheads, this is where the title “Dothead” comes from. This red dot the speaker is referring to is called a “bindi” usually in the Indian culture a bindi is used to signify that a woman is married and it also is referred to in a more religious meaning as a “third eye” to ward off bad luck. Overall, the title of this poem creates the idea that the author also at some point has experienced mocking based on his cultures stereotypes.
The poem focuses mostly on the overall irritation that the speaker has because of his classmates mocking of the Indian culture. The speaker himself is part of the minority, a young Indian boy, while his school mates are part of the majority, young white American boys. In school at this time within the poem, the students are apparently learning about World History, specifically that week, learning about India. This is what has started the teasing and mocking throughout the poem. The white American children do not understand or have respect for the Indian culture the way that the speaker does since it is in fact his own culture. This poem is a good example of how the majority of culture, in this case white Americans can be
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