The Test And After You My Dear Alphonse Analysis

Improved Essays
The texts “The Test” by Angelica Gibbs and “After You, My Dear Alphonse” by Shirley Jackson construct characters to evoke sympathy from readers for the African-Americans who were victims of racial prejudice during 1940’s America. Both stories use an African-American protagonist, who is treated as the ‘inferior’ in the white dominant society to represent victims of racial inequality. Marian in “The Test” is a competent and educated woman who was wrongfully failed in a driving test after enduring racist verbal harassment. Similarly, Jackson uses Boyd, an innocent child, who is subjected to latent racism. Likewise, both authors construct an antagonist to show the different racism applied by the society. “The Test” uses the ‘inspector’ who is blatantly …show more content…
The authors both use a white antagonist to represent the racial prejudice applied in society, which allow readers to antipathies them. “The Test” presents this through the ‘inspector’, an obtrusively racist man who degrades Marian due to her pigmentation. He speaks to her in mocking “Southern” accent saying they all (African- Americans) originated “from down yonder”. On the other hand, Mrs Wilson does not display direct racism but does so implicitly. She shows generosity towards Boyd; however, presume that he has a low financial status because of his colouration. She made assumptions that Boyd’s mother works to support her family, when she herself doesn’t. Although each character displays racism differently, both still show their ‘superiority’ and attempts to prove African-Americans as their ‘inferior’. The inspector “burst out laughing” as Marian informs him of her college degree and later fails Marian’s driving test without reasons. Correspondingly, Mrs Wilson is left “defeated” and withdraws the food she offered to Boyd once she learns that Boyd is not of ‘lower-class’. Both characters did not accept that African-Americans could obtain qualities of higher positions and uses their power as a white person to justify their place in society that excludes other races. The authors expressed the white society’s attitude towards African-Americans through the antagonists’ characteristics to represent the different forms of racial prejudice. This makes readers despise the ways society applies racism towards

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