Way in the Middle of the Air by Ray Bradbury

Decent Essays
Lauren Grimes CP English10 – Period 5 Mr. King Due; December 5th, 2012

Racial Prejudice in America

Racial prejudice is a pessimistic aspect of society that has critically affected many different people around the world. This idea is well demonstrated in Ray Bradbury’s short story “Way in the Middle of the Air”, which is part of The Martian Chronicles (1950). “Way in the Middle of the Air” displays a great amount of inequality and racism within America. This story focuses on the relations of the African-Americans and the white Americans in the South. The African-Americans, other known as “blackies” and “niggers” in the story, are tired of being belittled and treated unfairly by the
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Throughout the story he tries to prevent as many blacks as he can from leaving because of their obligations to him, but these men somehow came up with ways to pay their duties to him in the end, in so they can head off to a better life on Mars.

One might imagine that a racist white would be glad to see the blacks leave the world, but racism depends on the presence of those who hate it. Teece and his friends depend upon the blacks not just economically, but also as a way to identify themselves by what they are not, and to hold themselves higher about those who they belittle. Without the presence of the blacks, Teece looses a great amount of himself, his self in which he thrives from the act of abusing and harassing of blacks. Also, the whites including Teece indulge in a sense of panic when they come to the realization of who would do all jobs the blacks had. This shows the importance of blacks in the lives of the whites. Anger and revengefulness awakens within Teece when his former black employee, Silly, drives away in the distance and screams back at him, “Mr. Teece, Mr. Teece, what are you goin’ to do nights from now on? What are you goin’ to do nights, Mr. Teece?” (Bradbury, Pg. 99). At first Teece did not know what Silly meant by that, but then he realized he was referring back to when he would go out with his friends and lynch “niggers”, for fun and excitement. He has relied on blacks to be there not just to work for him, but
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