Analysis Of Toni Bambara's The Lesson

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The short story “The Lesson” was first published in 1972. This story is in a collection called “Gorilla, My Love” with 14 other stories. Toni Bambara has also published two other novels which added to her collection. In 1977 she published “The Sea Birds Are Still Alive” as her second volume of stories. She also worked on a little bit of screenwriting. Bambara’s short fiction is notable for the creative language and her ability to capture the poetry of black speech. The author stresses the importance of knowledge for both individual growth and collective goodness. Most of her stories focus on young girls determined to make their place in the world. In “The Lesson” it shows us how wealth is unequally divided throughout America. Bambara portrays…show more content…
She is Sylvia’s best friend and is also very observant. “Sugar is the only child who tells Miss. Moore exactly what she wants to hear” (“The Lesson”). She was very interested in the toys like the rest of the children. She realized that the toys cost so much money that they could live off that money for food. “You know, Miss. Moore, I don’t think all of us here put together eat in a year what that sailboat costs” (Bambara). Sugar saying this surprises Miss. Moore. Although it is the truth is just shows you how divided the world is. Sugar is learning and changing though the story from being in the toy store. By Sugar saying that it tells you as a reader that they are not wealthy. Living in the slums is more different than what they are witnessing in the toy…show more content…
“Sylvia grows angry at the disparity that she sees, she also recognizes that potential showiness of wealth, as represented by a women who wears a fur coat despite the hot weather” (“The Lesson”). The fur coat is a strong symbol of wealth. It shows that when you have money your buy and do things normal people wouldn’t. The wealthy lady is still wearing her fur coat even though it’s a hot summer day. “Then we check out that we on Fifth Avenue and everybody dressed up in stockings. One lady in a fur coat hot as it is. White folks crazy.” (Bambara). The author put this in the story to show that the children live in poverty. They are not use to being around wealthy people and expensive things. Seeing the women wear the coat on the hot day is a big sign of
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