Understanding Richard Wright's Black Boy: A Student Casebook to Issues, Sources, and Historical Documents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.
Results 1-3 of 69
I had resided but a short time in Baltimore before I observed a marked difference , in the treatment of slaves , from that which I had witnessed in the country . A city slave is almost a freeman , compared with a slave on the plantation ...
I used to talk this matter of slavery over with them . I would sometimes say to them , I wished I could be as free as they would be when they got to be men . “ You will be free as soon as you are twenty - one , but I am a slave for life ...
Hence labour was something that both races on the slave plantation sought to escape . The slave system on our place , in a large measure , took the spirit of self - reliance and self - help out of the white people .
What people are saying - Write a review
The Autobiographical Tradition
The American Dream of Success
The Dream Deferred
2 other sections not shown