Satire In Alice Walker's If I Was President

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“If I Was President” by Alice Walker describes a person aspiration to be president, and what he or she would do as president. Throughout the poem, the narrator makes references to African American and Native American political activist, who he or she seeks to find as president. As a result of the various narrative forms, diction usage, and styles within the poem, it is best analyzed using the African American Multicultural approach. In “If I Was President” there are two narrative forms at work. The first form that the is seen in the poem is the Satire. Satire ridicules folly of people an institutions, and offends many people at a time (Dobie 399, Morgan-Curtis). The satire is introduced through the naming of Mumia Abu-Jamal, Leonard Peltier, John Trudell, and Dennis Banks. In lines twenty-one to twenty-three the narrator states that he or she would tell these men, and Alice Walker, “it is time to let all of us/out of prison” (Walker). The use of irony satirizes the condition of the men in the poem. Mumia Abu-Jamal is a former Black Panther currently in jail because of a wrongful conviction in the 1990s (Fernandez). Whereas Peltier, …show more content…

Pronounce “signifyin’” it is the playful and indirect way that a person shares his or her opinion about another person (Dobie 224). Although some people use signifying as a form if ridicule, it can also be used to pay a compliment (Dobie 224). In the poem, the second function is utilized. Through this diction strategy, tribute is payed to Abu-Jamal, Peltier, Trudell, and Banks. By referencing the papers that Abu-Jamal used to own and the canvases of Peltier in lines thirty-rice through forty-two the speaker signifies to these two men that he or she appreciates their work (Walker). Besides signifying, other forms of diction in the African American traditions are

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