Jacob This Land Is Mine Analysis

1444 Words 6 Pages
“… in Detroit, one of the bloodiest race riots of the century” (587).
On June 20th, 1943 fights between black and white teenagers broke out at Belle Isle Park, an integrated amusement park on an island in the Detroit River. The conflict quickly spread off the island with the help of rumors and began to plague the rest of the city. After two days of violence, 6,000 federal troops were sent into Detroit to deescalate the situation. Overall, the riots resulted in amplified racial tensions in Detroit, $27.5 million in property damages to predominately black communities, 433 wounded people and 34 deaths, with 25 of them being black. The violence and circumstances surrounding the 1943 race riot in Detroit can greatly be related to the work of Jacob
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Taking place in European town controlled by the Nazi’s, the film centers around a schoolteacher who is forced to decide between ensuring his innocence and standing against his town’s oppressors when the Nazis threaten to convict him of murder. Naturally in an American propaganda film, he courageously decides to stand on the side of free speech and to speak out against the authoritarian Nazis. Consequently, this motivated others in the town to rise up against their evil occupiers. Overall, This Land is Mine rallied the American public’s to support the war by showing the free-speechless Nazi society and conveying the ideas of patriotism for one’s country and American exceptionalism. American exceptionalism is the subjective idea that America’s values and actions are inherently better and more justified than other nations. It is ironic that Baldwin saw this specific film because in many ways the America he lived in isn’t the bastion of freedom the film makes it out to be. During the pre-Civil Rights era, several methods were successfully used to suppress the rights of African Americans in the United States, such as poll taxes, literacy tests, segregation and Jim Crow Laws. Also, illegal methods were used to intimidate blacks from practicing their freedoms, such as lynchings and burning crosses. Hence, with history and Baldwin’s experience with discrimination, Baldwin utilizes this movie in his …show more content…
In the essay, racism manifests itself throughout, whether it is with the race riots or with the discrimination Baldwin faced at the restaurant in New Jersey. By commenting on and doing research on Baldwin’s references to prejudice, my group is producing a bigger picture of and gaining a greater understanding of the racism of the pre-Civil Rights era. In order to narrow down our many notes about racism, the group decided to keep only the annotations that were the most informative and unfamiliar, so that they would shed a new light on the story for the class. Therefore, my group selected annotations that effectively provide insight to references made about racism in “Notes of a Native

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