Percival Everett's The Appropriation Of Cultures

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Percival Everett’s short story entitled, “The Appropriation of Cultures” explores themes of irony and absurdity. The irony lies within each and every page. The story begins with Daniel, who is a young and successful black man with a degree from Brown University. He is also a musician and frequently played old tunes with a group of musicians. The story then shifts as white frat boys make suggestions of what the musicians should play, “One night, some white boys from a fraternity yellow forward to the stage at the black man holding the acoustic guitar and began to shout, ‘Play ‘Dixie’ for us! Play ‘Dixie’ for us!” (91). As the reader, I was confused as to why Daniel would go ahead and sing the song. It’s clearly offensive because it is known …show more content…

As the reader, I had to keep reminding myself of the title of this story. It is extremely ironic and absurd that Daniel would want to buy a car with a Confederate flag decal. It also humorous, because Daniel takes something that means a great deal to the backwards Southern culture, and makes it his own. The owner of the car, Travis, is confused when Daniel shows up and states that he is the person who inquired about the car with the large offensive decal. Travis and his wife, Barb, are left bewildered. However, Daniel is willing to pay over the asking price if the owner has it delivered. Travis agrees and later drives the car over, with Barb driving closely behind him. As they arrive, Travis asks the following question, “You sure you don’t want me to peel that thing off the window?” (99). Daniel states that he doesn’t want it peeled off and Barb is left extremely confused, until she finally asks him why he wants the flag? Daniel states the following, “‘I was just lucky enough to find a truck with the black-power flag already on it’” (100). This was a turning point for me in the story, and I found it quite hilarious. I could just imagine the reaction on Travis’ and Barb’s

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