In the poem “Nikki-Rosa,” Nikki Giovanni incorporates diction and imagery to prove that her childhood was happy in spite of her hardships. She writes about how throughout her life, her childhood was viewed as a hardship due to her race. However, “Black love is Black wealth” (22), implies that there was a strong community of people that was often dismissed when speaking of her childhood and she implies heavily that it wasn’t as awful as most people perceived it to be. In “Nikki-Rosa,” Nikki Giovanni adamantly refuses to accept others’ beliefs of her childhood only being full of hardships and sorrowful memories. Giovanni utilizes both diction and imagery to stress that her childhood was happy, despite what others believed.
Rosaleen was an very strong role model in Lily’s life. The author Sue Monk Kidd portrays it in the novel in many ways. Lily’s mother passed away and left when Lilly was just a little girl sitting at only 4 years old. Since that day Rosaleen decided too stepped in and showed her all the steps in life, even if she was there housekeeper but they still created such a strong bond. Rosaleen was a African American so lily did experience the racial hatred Rosaleen received but Lily did not care what color she was all she cared was what the person she was in the inside.
Through indirect characterization, Sue Monk Kidd, author of The Secret Life of Bees, displays Rosaleen as an obstinate character in order to exhibit the southern racism at hand. For example, Rosaleen is indirectly characterized when she comes into contact with the town’s most notorious racist, Franklin Posey, and will not apologize for standing up for her beliefs. Recalling the event, she exclaims, “‘he hit me till the policeman said that was enough. They didn’t get no apology, though’” (46). Above all, Rosaleen is stuck living in the south during the 1960s; a time period full of extreme racial tension.
As Don King, a famous, black boxing promoter, once said, “Hypocrisy is the mother of all evil and racial prejudice is still her favorite.” Both of these themes, hypocrisy and prejudice, are very prevalent in Harper Lee’s novel To Kill a Mockingbird; many white people in the fictional town of Maycomb criticize discrimination, sympathize with the oppressed, and praise those who take action, but only when it occurs in other parts of the world. However, when the injustice hits closer to home, the townspeople refuse to believe that prejudice lives, breathes, and thrives inside of them. When Scout and Jem’s Aunt Alexandra moves in with them, her suitcases are full of hypocrisy and classism. Aunt Alexandra is all about promoting family pride and loving family members, even if he or she is deranged, like Cousin Joshua. Alexandra calls Joshua “‘a beautiful character,’” (176), despite his flaws of being “‘locked up for so long,’” (176), and trying “‘shoot the president,’” (176).
She uses the foil to explore how Irene and Clare experience womanhood differently and connects it to the expectations of women in the 1920s. She mainly uses motherhood and marriage to exhibit these differences in their lives based on off race. She uses motherhood to show how Clare hates being a mother because of her fear of her husband finding out she’s black through her daughter’s skin tone. Irene appreciates being a mother even though she sacrifices her own desires for it; she understands the huge responsibility that comes with being a mother and embraces it. Marriage is used to portray Clare’s fear of her husband, and it shows Irene’s insecurity in her marriage when she suspects Clare and Brian are having an affair, yet her faith in her husband when she blames herself.
The arrogant, prejudice, and strong woman the reader sees in the story is actually a cover up. Mrs. Turpin uses her neat and tidy social hierarchy to comfort herself. What is she without the titles that southern society lends to its citizens? She does not know. After the teenager attacks her, she wrestles with herself and even with God on the subject of her identity.
She was not like other young women that would be housewives or maids at her age but instead is independent. Looking after herself and making more of a life for herself, she attends school, tries to play guitar, and looks for a love interest. This breaks the stereotype of a “normal” woman who is a housewife or maid and shows Beneatha is different. Therefore, Beneatha overcomes this criticism of her “unnatural ways”, and proceeds to make her life successful. A Raisin in the Sun is an inspirational book/play that tells the overcoming story of an African-American family Going through the terrible struggles of Chicago in the 1950’s.
In the short story “Everyday Use,” author Alice Walker allows the difference between two sisters, Maggie and Dee/Wangero to illustrate the theme heritage. As the story progresses, it reveals an African American family living in a small home with some sort of struggles. Dee, the eldest daughter, is a very intellectual young woman who lacks understanding in her family’s heritage because of her embarrassment of Maggie and Mama. Contrary to Dee, Maggie is not smart, but yet she understands her family’s background and is grateful of it. Sisters, Dee and Maggie differ in ideas of heritage.
I saw you. It wasn’t fair!” (Jackson, 224) It is apparent that she is not necessarily distressed over the practice of the ritual, but specifically that she is the victim, as she states they should start over, so that a new victim will be chosen. “I think we ought to start over,” Mrs. Hutchinson said, as quietly as she could.” (Jackson, 223) This differs greatly from Jane, who begins to sympathize with the plight of all domestic women through her experience with the woman behind the yellow wallpaper. Although she initially frowned upon the woman’s efforts to escape, the more her mental health deteriorated, the more she began to relate her plight to that of the trapped woman, both prisoners desperate for escape. With her newfound revelation, she sought to save the trapped woman from her prison, subconsciously freeing herself in the process.
She also realizes that Black people sometimes put themselves down because they think they are worthless, and therefore wants Walter to understand that just because he is Black doesn’t make him any less of a person. She makes him acknowledge this by sharing an anecdote of her history and how even though her ancestors were slaves, they never let anyone tell them that they “[weren’t] fit to walk the earth” (Hansberry 143). This enables Walter to also put his family's needs before his personal needs of obtaining more money. After seeing her family finally come together, Mama has finally successfully completed all 5 levels of the pyramid. Her dream of her family living comfortably has finally been achieved.
Abraham Lincoln once said, “Leave nothing for tomorrow which can be done today” (Basler). Not only does this collection of words seem to inspire many today, but it reflects the thoughts of southern women throughout the Civil War. Although modern women are very close to having equal rights, the feelings of southern women during the civil war differed from those of whom live now. Since the southern belles were not respected the way that modern women are today, matters were taken into the hands of each brave woman during the time. Before I begin to describe the powerful roles of women at and around the battlefield, it seems as if many do not know the influence that women had on the male soldiers as they went off to war.