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Black Lit 2 - Black Boy Part 2 & Gwendolyn Brooks

by: Kimberly Burke

Black Lit 2 - Black Boy Part 2 & Gwendolyn Brooks EH 304

Marketplace > Jacksonville State University > English > EH 304 > Black Lit 2 Black Boy Part 2 Gwendolyn Brooks
Kimberly Burke
Jacksonville State University
GPA 4.0

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About this Document

These notes cover Part 2 of Richard Wright's novel Black Boy and poems by Gwendolyn Brooks.
Survey of Black Literature 2
Dr. Felgar
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kimberly Burke on Friday September 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to EH 304 at Jacksonville State University taught by Dr. Felgar in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views. For similar materials see Survey of Black Literature 2 in English at Jacksonville State University.

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Date Created: 09/09/16
Part 2  Chapter 15– moves to the north to livein Chicago o Pg.270 –white women would never have gotten near him inthe south o Pg.271 –makes generalizations/assumptions about the white waitresses  Assumes b/c he didn’t seerecognizable signs ofpassion (fear&hate) that passiondidn’t existinthose women  Most likelythey just didn’t share around him  Virtually impossibleto be a part ofa place&not become a product of it o Lococentric &chronocentric  Habit, tradition, repetition = highly challenged o Makes us comfortable & requires no thought o Pg.272-273 – parenthetical arguments  Looked down on by people who believe in the trashiestvalues o Pg.274 –sees white cook spit in the soup  Doesn’t have enough confidence in his boss believing a blackman  Doesn’t believea white person would actuallyspitin the food  Taught to believe that white people do the best &have the best o Pg.293-294 – schemefor fooling blackpeople  Schemes are never practiced on black men, only blackwomen  Easyto exploit & take advantageof – says a lotabout Richard  If you don’t want to be a victimdon’t be an uneducated, poor blackwoman  Chapter 18 o Pg.318 –conversion to Communism  Finallyfelt likehe had a home, a placeto express himself  Until they started telling himwhen & what to write & dropped out  Communism was unsuccessful b/c Marx is affectedby social classmore than race  People put their chips on race  Class trumps race in this country  Swept off his feet by the prospect of belonging  Didn’t realize he was recruited to encourage more black men to join  They hoped the oppressed would join b/c of him  Didn’t want to be told when &how to write  Chapter 19 o Pg.256-258 – wants to write about what interests him  Blackmen are destined for ‘greater things’than the price of bread  The price of groceries is important to a blackmother  Maybe part of the reasonhe doesn’t want to write about it is b/c of his complicated relationship with his mother – doesn’t want to be reminded of her  Prices were deliberately kept higher inblack communities b/c they couldn’t shop or livein white communities  Political party that represents authority; he respects truth over authority  “spy” = word used to create paranoia & ruin trust between blacks  Nealsons/Communist comrades don’t respect his writing ambitions Gwendolyn Brooks  Known for her extreme generosity with her time o Open to giving advice,having workshops, reading her work  Writes for a largeaudience  Demanding & provocative  Less is more –quiet &omission is more powerful than wordiness  characteristic of her poetry – tremendous depth, implies & suggests  “the mother” pg.326-327 o Bold start in1945 with a poem about abortion o Makes the stand that sometimes abortion is the lesserevil o Tony Morrison’s Belovedmakes the caseofa blackwoman who drowned 2of her children b/c anything is better than slavery  Convicted of destroying property that is not hers – blackchildren were by lawproperty of the slaveowner & not their mothers o A Raisinin the Sun – maternal figure o Ending is a contradiction but sheloved the babies enough to keep them from the lifeworse than death  W.E.B. DuBois –blackpeople are involved in a living death  The lifeof a blackchild is worse than abortion o Children are supposed to be everything to a mother  “We Real Cool” pg.337 o to be verbs are omitted – blackEnglish o rhyme scheme – a a a a a a a x  rhyme is violatedat the end as a key part of the poem  3 functions of rhyme:  appeals to the ear  reflects the poem’s organization –rhyming couplets in this poem  reinforces meaning – calls attention to the connection of the lines  rhyme is essential tothe theme o fewestpossiblewords – elliptical poem (likeellipses)  wants the reader to fill in the gap o internal rhyme – insidethe lines o this way of lifeis a dead end o doesn’t yell or use too many words o strategic omission  “TheChicagoDefender senda Man to LittleRock” pg.337-339 o narrator: newspaper reporter o ChicagoDefender = blacknewspaper o deftly – extreme control, grace,& effectiveness o normal lifein LittleRock o basedon a real event – the integration of schools o people are polite & considerate of others’ feelings exceptthis 1 time  these white people goto church every Sunday but the integration of schools make them satanic  people are fine until their beliefs arechallenged o the power of the poem is her extreme understatement  “Malcolm X” pg.339 o uses Xinstead of Littleas a protest o preached self-sufficiency,defense,&independence o Okfor a white man to carry a gun, but it is a threat when a blackman does o 1963 – assassinated o extremely perceptive – physical &mental eyes o “vertical” – he’s thin & tall o “key” - preached self-reliance o self-sufficiencyis howshedefines being a man  A Raisininthe Sun –mother & son definitions ofmanhood  “a song in the front yard” pg.327 o front yard is a big deal to poets –seeit as more than a front yard  front yard represents respectability  back yard represents danger/options/adventure o Poets are moral seismographs (predict earthquakes)  More sensitive&perceptive than normal people o Metaphor = to get from the unknown to the known  “kitchenette building” pg.326 o Brooks makes the ordinary extraordinary o Repetition/habit/tradition kill our abilityto appreciate value o Poets maintain wonder & want it to reign o Tries to restore appreciation for what you have  “the vacant lot” pg.328 o symbol of what used to go on there o reminds you of the energy o Wordsworth’s “Michael” ends with “and never liftedup a singlestone”  Stone represents something Michael & his son would build together o Poets project valueonto the world – visionaries  “TheRites for CousinVit” pg.332-333 o Vit is closetovital o Person died inphysical sensebut among the living sheis vital/hyper energetic o Most of us miss almosteverything  Likewe haven’t looked atour thumbs sinceinfancy o Always being ina stateof ecstasygets oldtoo o Keep a sparkalivein us – the common is uncommon until you &society letit become common o Everydayness o Enthusiastic =God within


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