A Letter To My Nephew Analysis

1379 Words 6 Pages

Rochelle Brown

Instructor McPeake

English 1A

5 November 2016

10. How does racial segregation affect US culture/history?

It is no secret that America has been less than fair when it comes to the treatment of African

Americans in this nation. This segregation has led to the separation of thousands of families throughout

the nation to the Jim Crowe practice; these types of stigma often left a person devastated. On the One

Hundredth celebration of Emancipation, James Baldwin wrote “A Letter to my Nephew,” discussing

the role of race in American history. This letter is often seen as a plea to his teenage Nephew as well as

other young African Americans telling them to let go of their anger and embrace a more compassionate
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Blacks who tried, were subjected to being

lynched and that, was a best case scenario. Blacks could be ripped apart by dogs, burned alive or even

whipped to death. This type of treatment was carried on throughout slavery all the way until the 1960’s.

Author James Baldwin spoke about the unfair treatment of African Americans in his published article

where he wrote “A Letter to my Nephew.” In this letter that Baldwin devoted to a larger audience

rather than just his “nephew,” Baldwin informed his nephew that it is “this innocent country” that has

“set you down in a ghetto in which, in fact, it intended that you should perish” (64). Baldwin simply

stated the fact that it is America whom has indeed tried to cripple our minds just to later blame us for

not being up to par. In today’s society where inner city schools are ridiculously underfunded these

schools so happen to be the same ones that are primarily attended by black students. So if for centuries

blacks have been denied education legally and illegally who dares to label African Americans illiterate

or uneducated? As many black authors, businessmen, and inventors have helped shape and
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Some individuals may argue that the

relationship between the law makers and the African American community does play a vital role in the

education system as well as the trust in police officers, yet African Americans lack both needs. For most Americans the police give them a sense of protection and a sense of security; however, the

relationship between blacks and the police department is nowhere near what it should. This is all over

our nation, not just throughout the south. On December 3, 2014, Eric Garner was choked to death on

camera by the Staten Island police department while yelling “I can’t breathe,” for the petty crime of

selling single cigarettes. The crime that Garner committed should 've resulted in him getting a ticket for

less than a hundred dollars but in fact that husband and father is now deceased. In Baldwin 's letter,

Baldwin stated that “the symbols of your life have been deliberately constructed to make you believe

what white people say about you” (64). This quote plays an important role in today 's society due to

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