Unwind's Opinion On Racism Analysis

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Unwind Bingo
Unwind’s Opinion On Racism
Learning Outcome: Write a think piece on an important issue that is considered in the novel.

Are we the kinky European, or that Indian guy, maybe the wanna-be white guy who is actually a black guy? Whoever we are not, these are the everyday archetypes we are being made fun of because of racism. Over the course of Neal Shusterman’s modern dystopian novel, Unwind, we are given an insight into how the world of Unwind looks at racism through the eyes of Cyrus Finch (also known as CyFi). As he casually talks to Lev about the origins of racism in the past, and how people would use to call his race black. For this think piece, I will compare and contrast modern day society’s approach to racial discrimination
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This is how Unwind’s reality approaches the fight against racism, although it seems like a small change, its effects and outcomes are more impactful than we think. Under those circumstances, by replacing black with umber to describe the African-American race, we remove the value judgment to African-Americans, as umber gives out a neutral connotation. An explanation for this is that the word black and Negro have a history with African-Americans. Thus, it was coined to racially discriminate African-Americans or to make African-Americans feel inferior. While umber is a neologism that was never coined at a time when blacks were slaves or during the Civil Rights Movement, it was coined to describe a paint color. Consequently, African-Americans would not be offended when we call them an umber, instead of saying black or Negro. To illustrate my point, here is a quote from CyFi in Unwind as he talked about the origins of racism in the past. “They used to call us black can you imagine? Then there was this artist dude-mixed race himself, a little bit of this, a little bit of that…The color he used most was umber…Better words. Didn’t have no value judgment to them, Of course, it’s not like racism is gone completely, but as my dads like to say, the veneer of civilization got itself a second coat.” From unpacking this quotation, the “veneer of civilization” is described as a thin layer of attractiveness that disguises what is beneath, the ugliness of human nature. By adding a second coat, we are only adding more layers upon layers of value judgment to races. Yet we can never get rid of the ugly truth that racism is a part of our human nature. Just like what CyFi said, “It’s not like racism is gone
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