Tee Bob: Intergenerational Racism

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Moreover, Jimmy Caya’s rigid and destructive belief system originate from intergenerational racism. Intergenerational racism provides a limited scope for Jimmy to understand how the relationship between Mary Agnes and Tee Bob operates. The development of Jimmy’s belief system becomes noticeable when he emphasizes the fact that “[he] didn’t tell [Tee Bob] no more than what [his] daddy told [him]... What Mr. Paul told Mr. Robert. What Mr. Paul’s daddy told him. What [Raynard’s] daddy told [him]. No more than the rules [they have] been living by ever since [they] been here” (201). In the novel, family becomes a site of socialization, in which understandings of racism become intergenerational. Intergenerational racism speaks to the larger institution…show more content…
The historical legacy of slavery preserves Tee Bob’s privileges, which illustrates how whiteness dominates Mary Agnes in terms of race and gender. Tee Bob could exert sexual control over Mary Agnes as permitted by his cultural expectations. However, despite Tee Bob’s resistance to these cultural expectations, he is expected to uphold this advantage. Historically, it grants white men power. Power becomes central when Jimmy Caya cannot dismantle his belief that Mary’s sole purpose is to serve the sexual pleasure of Tee Bob. Jimmy Caya has been taught from time to time, the power of his role and gender historically has granted his white male community advantage. Thus, if Tee Bob breaks the expectations granted towards him, he breaks the legacy of slavery and gives new meanings to interracial relationships in the novel. If Tee Bob breaks the expectation and marries Mary Agnes, he not only disrupts Jimmy Caya’s beliefs, but an entire generations belief that a white man is only subject to use a black female for sexual pleasure, which is a product of intergenerational…show more content…
The phrases he uses in his narrative such as “the past and the present got all mixed up” (205), represents the alteration between Mary Agnes and Tee Bob as a representation of both Mary and Tee Bob’s pasts. Mary’s grandmother as the coloured lady who was chosen by the Creole gentlemen, and Tee Bob’s father with the black women, named Verda; these relationships represent the historical practice of white males using black females for sexual pleasure. When Raynard suggests the phrase “making up for the past left (205)” he implies upon the legacy that Mary came to the plantation to dismantle becomes insignificant in the present moment. Mary becomes a reflection of the past and becomes reduced to as a sexual object for Tee Bob’s pleasure in Raynard’s perspective. Sabine Broeck’s article “The Narrative Absence of Interiority in Black Writing: Suffering Female Bodies in The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” states that Mary Agnes gave Tee Bob “an inviting look of female helplessness and sexual availability (Broeck 93). This argument is further supported by Raynard’s description of how a look appeared on Mary Agnes’s face. Her look showed in the way she positioned herself on the floor. The look and positioning of her body is suggestive of being sexual in nature in which she invites Tee
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