“The Color of Water” by James McBride, elucidates his pursuit for his identity and self-questioning that derives from his biracial family. McBride’s white mother Ruth as a Jewish seek to find love outside of her house because of her disparaging childhood. The love and warmth that she always longed from her family, was finally founded in the African American community, where she made her large family of twelve kids with the two men who she married. James was able to define his identity through the truth of his mother’s suffer and sacrifices that she left behind in order to create a better life for her children and herself. As a boy, James was always in a dubiety of his unique family and the confusion of his color which was differ than …show more content…
James McBride demonstrates that one can learn about his own identity through others opinions of him in his society. Generally, youngsters often do not care about each other’s races unless someone wants the kids to distinct between the two races. At an early age, James realized that his race has something to do with his Identity. He noticed that both black and white people glare at his white mom and her black kids with an obscene expression on their face, letting James know that his family is different than other families which the society considered more acceptable than his family. James started to compare his skin tone with his mother’s skin tone and noticed that she was white however he was black. “When I asked her if she was white, she’d say, “No. I’m light skinned,” and change the subject again.” (Ch.4, pg.15) Ruth’s changing the topic of racial issues caused even more perplexity and insecurities within James. Because of his uncertainty, it was very difficult for James to decide how he fits into his conservative society. Also, in his community it was only the McBride siblings who seemed to come from the interracial family which made them partially feel like
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otal Number of Pages: 301 Text Page Number Response (Expand area as necessary) “She would ride in slow motion across our street, Murdock Avenue in the St. Albans section of Queens, the only white person in sight, as cars swerved around her and black motorists gawked at the strange. middle-aged white lady riding her ancient bicycle. p. 7
In The Color of Water, author James McBride writes both his autobiography and a tribute to the life of his mother, Ruth McBride. Ruth came to America when she was a young girl in a family of Polish Jewish immigrants. Ruth married Andrew Dennis McBride, a black man from North Carolina. James's childhood was spent in a chaotic household of twelve children who had neither the time nor the outlet to ponder questions of race and identity. Ruth did not want to discuss the painful details of her early family life, when her abusive father Tateh lorded over her sweet-tempered and meek mother Mameh.
In chapter 22 of The Color of Water, James Mcbride is wanting to see inside of the synagogue because of his family history. James is interested on his family history because he is writing a book about it. “My family has a history there, because there's a part of me, whether I, or those that run the synagogue, like it or not” (221). James does not know much about his history and is trying to get to know himself and understand himself more as well. He wanted to know the truth.
James was always confused on his own race during his upbringings. He expressed confusions on his own race towards his mother in many ways. Constantly James was questioning Ruth whether he was black or white. Ruth told James that he was neither but instead he was just a human being.
Those who were lacking the “blessing” were often thought less of by both races, and consequently faced a larger risk of peril. Lucky for McBride, he lived in an area where racism was not as poignant and was sheltered from some of the world’s cruelty in his younger years. As he grew older, he was beleaguered with events that changed his lighter view on the world. But regardless of the many trials he faced, he turned into a strong individual.
Jon is a twelve-year-old boy, currently in 6th grade. He is the youngest of two children in a biracial family here in Pennsylvania. His father is African American and his mother is Caucasian. He lives in the suburbs of Allentown in a predominately white neighborhood. The demographic in his school he attends is twenty-seven percent non-white students.
In the memoir, The Color of Water, McBride uses events from his childhood to explain why his adulthood turned out the way it did. McBride went through many things in his childhood. McBride had eleven other siblings, and he was the eighth one. From him losing his father, to his mother never really recovering from his death. That is when everything started going downhill for him.
Throughout “The Color of Water”, James Mcbride experiences a life questioning about his mother and who they really are. Mcbride seeks for answers that he can’t find which leads them to search elsewhere. As the story goes along, James meets Aubrey Rubenstein in which he learns that he has answers towards his family. James always wanted to know why his mother never answered any of his questions. For example, “ She picked that life for herself and she lived it, that’s all,” (McBride 227).
In the story “Color Of Water” Ruth and james both change when Hunter died. James became the opposite of what he was. He began to snatch purses and he would smoke as much as he could with his friends. “ Which we smoked in as much quantity as possible. I snatched purses” (McBride 9).
Moreover, demonstrate consequences are taken to oppress racial and ethnic minorities to keep them in a subservient position. Overall, this film has provided me with a visual depiction of how stereotypes are a mental tool that enforces racial segregation and self-hate. The label of “White” became a necessity for Sarah Jane to achieve in society. To attain it she needed to move to a new city, change her name and deny her mother.
"The Color Of Water" is a memoir, written by James McBride about a biracial man, his white Jewish mother, their family, and their struggle from the early 1900s till the mid 1900s. The main characters in the memoir are the author and his mother; they tell their stories and alternate chapters throughout the memoir. the memoir begins with the author's mother explaining her earliest memories of her parents, the details of their marriage, and their coming to America. James's life was a chaotic mess, the only order in his life came from his stepfather, who was named hunter, Hunter was a strong good natured man who was the only father figure James had ever known.
The decision to attend a white school is a tough one and Junior understands that for him to survive and to ensure that his background does not stop him from attaining his dreams; he must battle the stereotypes regardless of the consequences. In this light, race and stereotypes only makes junior stronger in the end as evident on how he struggles to override the race and stereotypical expectations from his time at the reservation to his time at Rearden. How race and stereotypes made
The theory being applied to James McBride’s family is Sigmund Freud’s Psychodynamic theory. This theory is based on the grounds of the importance of early childhood experiences that shape personality and behavior (Lifespan). Applying this theory to James’ family we can begin by looking at the time period in which the children grew up. The family grew up in a time where black and whites did not marry and it was unacceptable for them to be together. This caused some of the family members to develop a defense mechanism.
Instead of giving in to the man’s racist ways, Ruth holds her ground and honors her husband by displaying her pride for him and their relationship publicly. She was undeterred by the possible negative outcome of her bold actions, which is key in an effective leader. Her courage and confidence lead her to making daring decisions, like marrying a black man, moving away from home, and helping her husband create a church from scratch. “‘What color is God’s spirit?’ ‘It doesn’t have a color,’ she said.
The definition of someone’s identity is the distinct personality of an individual. There are a lot of factors that determines someone’s identity. Things such as your race, role in society, and your faith. Throughout our lives, we seek out people who we can identify with. We reach out to others and learn from interests they have and we evaluate their responses to us.