Charles Chesnutt was a well-known African American author who was known for his short stories that conveyed racist African American dialect and conveyed his wishes for equality and social and political change for African Americans. The purpose of this paper is to delve into Chesnutt’s short story “The Goophered Grapevine” to define the way Chesnutt manipulated his audience and worked towards white sympathy for the black community. Chesnutt knew that if he attempted his goal with his white audience’s knowledge, they would resist and he would therefore be unsuccessful. Therefore, Chesnutt needed to disguise the motive of the story so he could affect his audience without their knowledge of his manipulation. Chesnutt did so through the use of storytelling with three characters that served to show the three sides of the racial divide. Through the use of storytelling, Chesnutt used the three main characters in “The Goophered Grapevine as a whole to represent and show the different sides of the racial divide and manipulate his audience into sympathizing with the black society in order for social and political change; Uncle Julius functioned as the storyteller as well as the black society, John functioned as the white side of the community who resisted change, and Annie functioned as the side of the white community that sympathized with the black community and sought political and social change for the black community.
In Charles Chesnutt’s novel, The House Behind the Cedars, there are divides between individuals in the black community based off of skin tone. It reflects on the experience of John Warwick and his sister Rena Walden as they attempt to pass as white. Rena leaves home to come with John Warwick back to his home in South Carolina where he works as a white lawyer and Rena takes on the role of a white woman. But they face the reality that their attempt at passing comes with limited success.
The realism in this story is illustrated by the protagonist in this story, Mr. Ryder; this man could very well represent Chesnutt himself because both men were mixed raced, sophisticated, and well-respected by their peers. This story did not focus a lot on the layout of the story but it centered on the outcome of the protagonist. It is through Mr. Ryder, also a member of the Blue Vein Society, that the readers received his viewpoint of race relations between the lighter and darker skinned blacks when he said:
This is when race was the central topic of world history. In the mean time according to him, the color line also has significant subjective dimensions. He also examines race as symbolic and experiential reality. With our modern society, we see a great shift in the racism, or the color line. The perfect example given in our book is about the election of Barack Obama for presidency. As we know that was one of the biggest events in the history of the US. Having a president of color, shows how far we have come. Children today will be less likely to take white dominance, because they live in a world where there are also education African Americans, such as Obama and the first lady. However, as mentioned in the book “racialization continues to be a powerful force in the United States” (pg 349). Statistics show that there are still more black males in prisons than other races. White communities are still healthier, and have higher educational differences than people in color.
“Between the World and Me”, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, is a letter written to his son about what it means to be black and how tough it is to be a part of this race in the United States of America. In this book, Coates talks about his life in the black community, starting from childhood memories all the way to present day. Coates also tries sends a message, which is that his son should not lower his guard and be completely confident about who he is, instead he should be afraid about what the world is capable of doing to a black man. In this work, Coates disagrees on what it means to be black or white in America.
The Glory Field by Walter Dean Myers best conveys the character traits of courage, ambitiousness, and supporting family even when times appear to be distressful. This book takes you through African American history with the excitement and thrill of fiction. It allows you to witness the glory of African American evolution, from a period of slavery to modern day. The reader witnesses courage as African Americans try and fight for freedom and equality in an unforgiving society. African Americans try and defy the society’s perspective of them in an attempt to reach an optimal level of success. They work to divert from their typical expectations, and strive for success even when the possibilities are minimal. They strive to build a better living besides being maids and factory workers, and they attempt to remove every obstacle in their way of success. They desire to go above what is expected of them, so they can achieve at a prodigious level in a segregated society. Even as technology advances, the reader witnesses the character’s sense of community. They always believe that family is crucial to success even in times of distress. If they abandon their community, then they abandon the only people that support them. In this time period, their community was composed of the only people that cared about them. The African American society emulates these traits throughout this book, as the author inserts you into their fight for equity and freedom. The Glory Field takes
Race relations have always been a very controversial topic in this country and still are. In the mid-1900s there were many writers who felt very strongly about how African Americans and white people interacted together. In this paper three individual excerpts by three different authors will be discussed. All three of these authors have different viewpoints because of how they see the world based on their individual life experiences.
Most of his writing tends to deal with difference races, but most commonly used in his writing is African-Americans. His bestselling book, Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II. (Douglas Blackmon, 2008) This writing revolves around similar topics of race and human rights, but also neo slavery that happened after the civil war. Neo slavery is slavery that happened after it was outlawed in December 6, 1865 when the 13th amendment was passed and
In Kiese Laymon “How to Slowly Kill yourselves and others in America” and Brent Staples “Black Men and Public Spaces” both essays deal with being an African American man but the authors respond in a different ways. At one point in history being an African American wasn’t always the easiest but two Authors shared their stories about the experiences they had which were very different. Although the color of their skin is the same and how they treated was as well both authors take different precaution’s to handle the situations they were in to persuade the audience on how to deal with the effects of racism. Both authors show their hidden message through the actions presented throughout the essays. Laymon`s casual tone and will to fight make
In the beginning chapters of the book, we get a glimpse of the typical home and community of an African American during segregation. Many Africans Americans were too adjusted to the way of living, that they felt
Throughout the novel many problems occur. Some of the main problems are racial and equality issues. Events in this book show how prejudice and intolerance can ruin numerous friendships and change lives.
A lack of self-awareness tended the narrator’s life to seem frustrating and compelling to the reader. This lack often led him to offer generalizations about ““colored” people” without seeing them as human beings. He would often forget his own “colored” roots when doing so. He vacillated between intelligence and naivete, weak and strong will, identification with other African-Americans and a complete disavowal of them. He had a very difficult time making a decision for his life without hesitating and wondering if it would be the right one.
Thesis: During the civil war, race was a huge matter. African Americans were treated differently just because of their skin color. The North was fighting for the African Americans freedom while the south kept them as prisoners. There was a lot done to and for the African Americans.
The background of an individual allows the individual to adapt to new circumstances no matter how radical the change may be. It is very apparent that in the book, A Year in the South: Four Lives in 1865, that people whether they were black or white suffered different hardships, however their background was what enabled them to succeed or fail after the war. There were four people which this book was focused upon: Louis Hughes, who
At the beginning of the story, the narrator provides a brief description of himself that allows readers to reflect upon his character and morality. He introduces himself as someone who believes that