Literary Analysis Of Dick Gregory's 'Shame'

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Truly successful authors have the ability to convey their view of a place without actually saying it, to portray a landscape in a certain light simply by describing it. In the provided excerpt taken from the opening paragraphs of “Shame,” Dick Gregory does just this. Through his use of stylistic elements such as selection of detail, old-fashioned language, repetition of words and simple sentences, Gregory reveals the shame within being poor setting the stage for a periodic ending. Beginning in the first paragraph of the passage, Gregory selects the two most simple sentences introducing the shame saying, “ I never learned hate at home, or shame. I had to go to school for that” (1). This sentence is very understandable and straight forward with its short length. These two sentences are important because the set the main idea about being shameful. Also, with its shortness it is easy for everyone to fully comprehend it. Within the story there are a few words the come up very frequently. For example, “Pregnant people get strange tastes. I was pregnant with poverty. Pregnant with dirt and pregnant with smells that made people turn away. Pregnant with cold and pregnant with …show more content…

In the story it says, “ Leave him alone, Mister Williams. I’ll pay the twenty-six cents.” “ Keep your twenty-six cents. You don’t have to pay for it now. I just finished paying for it” (5). “Why didn’t you pay it before?” “ I was pretty sick about that. I waited too long to help another man”(6). This ending was not expected in the beginning, however there was a little of foreshadowing towards it. One example of it is when the teacher made a rude comment and no one stood up for him just a few tears from his crush. It is a periodic ending because we didn’t really know where he was going with the story, it wasn’t until the end that we fully understood that he was talking about standing up for

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