James Baldwin: What It Means To An American

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Being born an American is incarnation of many years of struggle and victories that has led to our country to its present path. Though we are born with the history of American society upon our shoulders the age-old question still persists to that child coming into this world of “What it means to an American” in their present day of living. Depending on the individual this meaning can differ from person to person based into the world they came into. For a black man such as James Baldwin and many other disenfranchised peoples it can be difficult to discover what it truly to be an American. Mr. Baldwin believes that the flawed American writers should confront these issues of what it means to be American. Those writers that are enlightened moved writers felt the need to move to Europe. This age-old question can’t be answered in a single word. It is a question that one needs to discover for oneself through deep thought as Mr. Baldwin and many writers did in Europe. His opinion holds truths on the current state of society of those who are less enlightened. Mr. Baldwin’s critique of America holds many ideas that should be examined and explored as a commentary on the state of American society. In Mr. Baldwin’s essay, he critiques writers as well as how he would have trouble surviving as a black man in the America we know. This country has tested him and pushed him to Europe, where he was able to find himself and what it means to be an American. Mr. Baldwin was placed in a
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