Dick Gregory Shame Summary

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The Analysis of Shame “Shame’ to me was a great example of how African Americans lived in the 1940’s. Dick Gregory spoke about his experience from when he was a child. Gregory had a very rough childhood, but he was taught to make do with what he had. He had a crush on this young girl by the name of, “Helene Tucker.” Everything he did was to impress her. Gregory said, “When I played the drums in high school it was for Helene and when I broke track records in college it was for Helene and when I started standing behind microphones and heard applause I wished Helene could hear it” (165). Gregory felt shame before he even acknowledged it. Gregory had five brothers and sisters with no father in the home, I believe there was shame in that. His family did not have any water in their home. Gregory explained how he used to go to…show more content…
They knew he did not have a father, or his family did not have any money. It was never spoken of until one particular Thursday when the teacher went around the classroom, and asked each individual how much would their daddy be giving to the Community Chest. She asked everyone except for Gregory, and I am most certain that he was ashamed at that point. You can tell in his reaction, “What is it now? You forgot me?” Gregory exclaimed (167). The teacher in a very sassy manner, in front of the entire classroom said, “We are collecting this money for you and your kind, Richard Gregory” (167). There was shame in that response. Not shame for the teacher, but for Gregory. Everyone knew that his family was on relief. Gregory even said, “There was shame in going to the Worthy Boys Annual Christmas Dinner for you and your kind, because everybody knew what a worthy boy was” (167). There was shame in Gregory from day one, but he did not acknowledge it until his teacher validated it in front of the whole classroom. Gregory mentions how after this incident he felt numb, and sorry for himself for a
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