Coffee Will Make You Black Character Analysis Essay

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Many people in the world would just follow what they were taught even if it’s wrong. Would you? In the novel Coffee Will Make You Black by April Sinclair, the main character, Stevie develops into a young lady who knows how to think for herself. Stevie lets her peers and family influence her physically and mentally, but over the course of the novel, Stevie learns how to resist this oppression by standing up for what she wants and her beliefs. In the end, she lets go of the negative ties to her life. The novel follows Stevie an eleven year old girl who lives in Southside Chicago throughout her middle and high school years. Stevie goes through the social pressure of her peers and family to tell her how to act, think, and look. Slowly throughout …show more content…

Stevie is at a party where one of her friends starts to talk badly about a girl that eats more than one hotdog. When Stevie asks how that’s bad, Tanya says, “Boys are different [...]can eat as much as they want [..] people will think it’s cute. [...] If a girl does that, people will talk about her like a dog (pg.65).” This is a double standard, as males are able to get away with things that females wouldn’t be able to. Conversely, Stevie pays no mind to what Tanya says and eats another hotdog showing major character development whereas the Stevie before would care about fitting in or what people thought about her. Another significant factor in the novel is when Stevie and her friends play a game about who’s lighter. One of the girls, Joyce tries to put down another girl by saying, “Look at her arm next to mine. It looks black (pg.66)!” This event shows that people seems to think having lighter skin is better. Stevie then being more mature asks, “Do you think that it makes somebody better ‘cause her arm lighter?(pg. 66).” With that, no one knows how to reply. The event symbolizes internalised oppression that has been imprinted into the young girls’

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