Understanding Richard Wright's Black Boy: A Student Casebook to Issues, Sources, and Historical Documents
From Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and W.E.B. Du Bois on the one hand, to Black Codes, Jim Crow laws, and white supremacist pronouncements on the other, Felgar creates a dialogue between the voices of oppressed blacks, including Richard Wright, and those of oppressing whites over the issue of race and racism. Students will be able to analyze a variety of perspectives on this issue from the earliest days of the American republic to the present day. Felgar also includes primary documents on the American dream of success, which has remained elusive for so many blacks. A chapter on the American autobiographical tradition uses excerpts from Ben Franklin's autobiography, as well as from those by Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and W.E.B. Du Bois, to place Wright squarely in the tradition of this genre and show that Wright was more a believer in the myth of perpetual upward mobility than he realized. In a chapter called The Dream Deferred, documents show how freed blacks were just as enslaved by new and restrictive laws after the Civil War as they had been under slavery. Each chapter concludes with study questions, ideas for written and oral examination, and suggested readings to aid students in examining the issues raised by Wright's autobiography.
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As a child , Wright realized that race was an extremely dubious concept , particularly in light of the fact that his grandmother was as white as any “ white ” person . He never saw any evidence that race was a legitimate source of ...
The first - person narrator is in a tricky position , because he is looking back at the past ( Wright calls Black Boy “ a record of childhood and youth , ” but it is in fact fictionalized ) and reporting and interpreting what the ...
The fact that my flesh was soft and tender added to the pain . But I had no choice . I had to wear the flax shirt or none ; and had it been left to me to choose , I should have chosen to wear no covering . In connection with the flax ...
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The Autobiographical Tradition
The American Dream of Success
The Dream Deferred
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