Between the World and Me, written by Ta-Nehisi Coates and dedicated to his then fifteen-year-old son, is engulfed in riveting and powerful messages. Bestselling author Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote “Between the World and Me” with hopes and intentions of providing his son and his readers with pivotal guidance and wisdom, drawn directly from his personal experiences and formed perspectives. One may accurately attest that Coates achieved his intent. The impact had by the messages relayed in this book certainly confirm that testament. However, one can also argue that the personal experiences shared by Coates were what urged his messages forward. While personal perspective undoubtedly enables messages to be relatable and thus well received, personal perspectives are not without take-backs. Three take-a-ways from a personal perspective include bias, limited scope, and credibility. …show more content…
Coates begins to convey this message by stating “This is difficult because there exists, all around us, an apparatus urging us to accept American innocence at face value and not to inquire too much. And it is so easy to look away, to live with the fruits of our history and to ignore the great evil done in all of our names. But you and I have never truly had that luxury” (12-13). He then expounds further on the message, stating “But this has never been an option because the Dream rests on our bodies, the bedding made from our backs”
Between the World and Me, written by Ta Nehisi Coates in 2015. The book is basically an extended letter of advice from Coates to his son Samori. I believe the most important message Ta Nehisi Coates shared in “Between the World and Me” is that the African American body has not been and still is not valued in the United States because of the euphoric dream that mainstream America lives in. On page 5 , Coates begins the book mentioning a talk show host asking him what it meant to for him to lose his body. By asking him this, Coates felt that the show host was “asking me to awaken her from the most gorgeous dream”
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates is a book with a powerful message about racism and white power in America. Coates chose to write his book as a letter addressed to his fifteen-year-old son, Samori. The letter format is a clever way to get his message across by making the book a personal experience, rather than preaching to the readers about racism. Early in the reading he states, “my work is to give you what I know of my own particular path while allowing you to walk your own” (Coates 39). He sets up the story by informing the reader that he is not flawless and still doesn’t fully understand life, but he is going to try his hardest to pass his knowledge of the world to his son, and anyone reading.
Through first portraying the audiences' shared confusion and expressing the terrorists actions, next revealing the American people's pain, then lastly implying resilience in America and reassuring their strength, Pitts motivates America to come together and combine their strengths to respond and advance from the attackers. In the first section of the poem “We’ll Go Forward from this Moment”, Louis Pitts questions the motives of the terrorists by beginning to express his anger or confusion towards the attackers and slowly uplifting the Americans from comparing strength and weakness to asking questions which reflects his threat to the terrorists. After stating his resentment towards the terrorists, Pitts aggressively says, “Did you want us
Coates states “What i told you is what your grandparents tried to tell me: that this is your country, that this is your world, that this is your body, and you must find some way to live within all of it” He uses parallelism when he utters “that this is your country, that this is your world, that this is your body” and is showing his son that some of the situations going on now, were going on then. He is articulating that everything is yours and you have to figure out how to live with it. “When I was your age the only people I knew were black, and all of them were powerfully, adamantly, dangerously afraid.” He uses asyndetons, when he states “powerfully, adamantly, dangerously” to characterize the fate of fear in blacks when he was growing up.
“I thought of walking in, smacking the first fool I saw, and taking a suspension like a badge. But that was just the voice of my intelligent armor. I was still a dreamer, if repressed, was still cupcakes and comic books at the core.” (116-1117) This line interested me because it shows Coates at a crossroads.
He has knowledge that his son will grow up privileged, well educated with good behavior, however, he does not want him to fall victim to the dream life. Coates does not want to limit his son in any way, but as a father who himself has experienced this fraught history of unfair social justice and vulnerability of his black body. Coats also take focus in on the Civil war, which is one of the main themes of Between you and Me that is an honest accounting of the history of the United States. The Civil War, in particular, has been subject to a softening, a blurring, and a manipulation of its brutal truths. Reconstruction did not bring the nation together racially, and the years following the war laid the groundwork for the Dream and for the ways in which the country would maintain its racial separation without the actual presence of slavery.
When he appears to the reader's intellect he says “the fact of history is that black people have not-probably no people have ever- liberated themselves strictly through their own efforts”. This quote appeals to the readers because Coates indicates that the history of black people in America is that we never been free in this country by our own personal actions. Coates further appeals to the reader's intellect by saying “history is not solely in our hands. And still, you are called to struggle, not because it assures you to victory but because it assures you an honorable and sane life”. In this quote, Coates explains that the history of being black in America is a struggle but it is a struggle worth black people being honorable of when we can overcome the struggle.
Honesty is essential in the quest for freedom. In Between the World and Me, Coates tells his son the truth, without fear, without repression, and without appeasement. Coates doesn’t write as a spokesperson for the black community, but he writes knowing that he will be a spokesperson not matter where he is or what he does. This a reality black people must deal with every day. Coates uses the language he does not because of the fact that it will be read as more than his words, but because they are his words regardless.
Although he believes that this question is unanswerable, Coates’ purpose is to express his deepest concerns for his son and to help him understand his personal experiences as a black man. He achieves his purpose by incorporating rhetorical skills such as ethos, pathos, and logos. Coates has been a successful journalist and writer for several years. He previously worked for The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and O
Now that I’ve read “Between the World and Me” I 've come to appreciate the way Coates thinks. I for one never read one of his books, but from this book I want to read more of his works. He was inspired to write this book by James Baldwin, who wrote "The Fire Next Time". “Between the World and Me” was written to Coates’s son while “The Fire Next Time” was for Baldwin’s nephew. In this novel, Coates ruminates on his childhood in Baltimore and his life growing up.
Here is what I would like for you to know: In America, it is traditional to destroy the black body, it is heritage”. (103) That quote comes the most compelling theme in Coates letter, it how and he describes the black body and how it is always under threat racism, Coates writes “so that America might justify itself, the story of a black body's destruction must begin with his or her error, real or imagined”. Coates goes on and writes on how in black American history that black men and women have had their bodies shackled, beaten, lynched and enslaved by America. Then he compares black history to present time here in America and now witnesses the current black experience with police brutality and senseless shootings, that play out on cable news.
Analyzing “The Case for Reparations” by Ta-Nehisi Coates The past is the past, but sometimes the past comes back and bites us on the butt. In Ta-Nehisi Coates’s article, “The Case for Reparations”, Coates describes the wrongful acts done by white supremacists towards African-Americans. Throughout his article, Coates provides strong logos and pathos to his argument. The one issue that he fails to discuss is ethos or credibility towards his argument.
“... America will never be happy till she gets clear of foreign dominion. Wars, without ceasing will break out till that period arrives… the flame of liberty may sometimes cease to shine, the coal can never expire.” The personifications of “America will never be happy” and “the flame of liberty” represent the constant craving for independence. These statements create ethos to persuade the colonists to act and to escape the dismay. “I love the man that can smile in trouble… strength from distress… brave by reflection… whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death.”
Many people forget that African Americans in this country have been enslaved for longer than they have been free. Coates reminds his son to not forget their important history and that they will continuously struggle for freedom over their own bodies. They must learn to live within a black body. These struggles can be seen in the racial profiling and brutality among police officers in cases such as Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, and countless of others. He goes on to describe his childhood and how fear was the root of black existence.
One becomes and American by forgetting ways or “prejudices” that keep them from receiving a grand position on the “lap of our great Alma Mater.” He writes that the labors performed by the countrymen aid in earning the title freeman. All of the title holders have received ample rewards and benefit from “wanting a vegetative mold.” He believes that the diversity of the freemen here will and should cause tremendous changes to the world.