Racism in Blackout vs Berry Essay

612 Words Jun 6th, 2012 3 Pages
The theme of racism is clearly apparent in two short stories “Berry” and “Blackout” and will be discussed and compared. Blackout is the story of an American woman who was waiting at a bus stop when a black man approaches her and asks for a light. She does not have a match so she gives him a light from her cigarette, but upon returning it she flicks it away. The man is clearly offended and later a conversation ensues about race and gender. The short story “Berry” is about a black man hired at last minute at a home for crippled as a kitchen boy due to the previous worker leaving the job without notice. He was paid $8 instead of the actual wage of $10 despite being made to do much more work than he was supposed to a lot of which was …show more content…
In Berry the theme of racism is much more blatant, their displeasure at the fact that berry was black was stated numerous times throughout the short story “Her wire to the employment agency produced results but – black ones,” “Well pay the darkie eight”. He was also underpaid although doing work that was not part of his job in addition to his work because of his skin colour and when the child was injured Berry was immediately blamed by the members of staff without even giving him a chance to explain. He was then fired without pay and he returned to Jersey. The two stories have been compared and contrasted. In Berry we see a southern uneducated black man hired by a crippled hospital and falls victim to racism while in Blackout we see an educated black man having a confrontational conversation with a racist American white woman at a bus stop. The theme of racism has been explored and demonstrated in both stories.

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