Friends Chapter Summaries

490 Words2 Pages
My thoughts after reading this chapter of the book are people can’t always rely on friends, and words can hurt more than actions. Friends are great companions, but they won’t always understand the situation and say things that were unintentionally offensive. In one of the scenarios, when the speaker runs late for a meeting with a friend, she calls them a “nappy-headed ho” (41). It might have been casual name calling for the friend, but the speaker feels troubled about how they should react. The friend wasn’t acting out of spite, but to the speaker, it had the same result: awkwardness and tenseness. Another scenario that reveals the weakness in friend is when a cashier asks the speaker if their card would work when the cashier hadn’t asked it…show more content…
For example, after a hurtful utterance from a trusted person like a friend, “Incoherence feels violent” (42). The author’s word choice of incoherence fits perfectly in this situation where any explanation would feel awkward; even an apology doesn’t clear away the weird atmosphere. Another important line is “You didn’t mean to say that aloud” since people don’t usually say their thoughts out loud (44). Most people try to filter their speech and prevent themselves from saying insensitive comments, but sometimes, they forget and say it out loud. Even if they apologize or say they didn’t mean it, the speaker will keep remembering this incident and feel bad about themselves. However, the speaker can’t do anything to change their situation because the things commented on are traits they were born like their skin color. Finally, many people believe that “the ambition of the racist language is to denigrate and erase” people (49). However, philosopher Judith Butler suggests that it is actually a chance to stand out and engage with others. Since racist language targets the visibility of people, it gives people ways to show their presence as well. While being racist is not good, it also lets people be under the spotlight. These lines connect to the themes of misunderstanding and presence by showing how people’s actions help uncover and point ugly or necessary
Open Document