“The don’t think all of us here

“The
Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara

1.  Throughout the story, Sylvia dislikes Miss
Moore because she believes Miss Moore acts like smart aleck. Miss Moore
mentions how “She’d been to college and said should take responsibility for the
young ones’ education” (Bambara 146). As the story continues the character
Sylvia is trying to resist her educational efforts. Miss Moore is trying to
teach her reasonability and how to manage her money wisely. Miss Moore then
asks, ” do you known what money is” (Bambara 147). Sylvia then says, ” does
she think we are a bunch of retards” (Bambara 147). This portrays that
Sylvia does not have interest in Miss Moore life lessons.

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2.  In the article, “The Lesson” Thomas Cassidy
believes the story is about a child’s realization of economic inequity in
society. Which I believe Cassidy is right because at the beginning the kids
want, “the sailboat” (Bambara 149). However, later in the story Sugar realizes
that it is no important and says, “I don’t think all of us here put together
eat in a year what that sailboat costs” (Bambara 151)

3.  Moore wants the kids to understand about
economic inequity and how they can invest in something better for themselves.
She wants them to, “wake up and demand their share of the pie” (Bambara 150).
For instance, when Miss Moore asks the children what they have learned Sugar
then responds, “You know, Miss Moore, I don’t think all of us here put together
to eat in a year what that sailboat costs” (Bambara 151). Sugar then responds
again saying “this is not much of a democracy if you ask me. Equal chance to
pursue happiness means an equal crack at the dough, don’t it?” (Bambara 151).

4.  When Sylvia tries to go into the FAO Schwarz
she feels, “shy” (Bambara 150). The reason why Sylvia feels shame is because
she remembers when, “Sugar and crashed into the Catholic church on adare. But
once we got in there and everything so hushed and holy and the candles and the
bowin and the handkerchiefs on all the drooping heads, I just couldn’t go
through with the plan” (Bambara 150). Sylvia then mentions how she, “went up
to the altar and did a tap dance while Sugar played the nose flute and messed
around in the holy water” (Bambara 150). This experience reminds Sylvia when
she went inside the store, the atmosphere was holy that they could not go
through with it.

“Volar” By Judith Ortiz
Cofer

1.      The narrator dreams of being Supergirl because
she is self-conscious of her image and dreams that, “Her hair would fill
magically go straight and turn a golden color” (Cofer 317). This seems to be
the little girl’s picture of a perfect girl, who she longs to be. This helps
the reader to understand why the little girl chose Supergirl because of what
she thinks are imperfections to herself such as, “my tight curls still clinging
to my head, skinny arms and legs . . . unchanged” (Cofer 317). The narrator
then mentions dreaming of, “bonus of breast, but not to larger” so she can fit
into what she believes is the ideal in society (Cofer 317).

2.      The narrator sees the landlord selfish
because, “she knew her parents feared him” and sees him, ” sitting on
the floor counting his dollar bills” (Cofer 317). The narrator then plays a
trick by, “blowing a little puff of my super-breath into his fireplace,
scattering his stacks of money so that he had to start counting all over again”
(Cofer 317).

3.      The narrator’s setting is a little girl who is
from Puerto Rico and she lives in the United States. The little girl is trying
to adjust to the culture, traditions, and the ideal society of the country. For
instance, she dreams of being Supergirl with her hair, “magically going
straight and turning a golden color” (Coffer 317). She then wakes up and
finds herself, “back in my body: my tiny… chest unchanged” (Cofer 317). She
also knows that she is not rich because when the narrator describes her room
she describes it as, “I’d wake up in my tiny bedroom with the incongruous—at
least in our tiny apartment—white “princess” furniture” (Coffer 317). The
narrator understands that looking back at her situation it was not a princess
room. She realizes that her parents discuss important issues in the kitchen and
mentions that is her parents, “time together at the beginning of each day” and
if she wakes up too early she can feel “their disappointment if she
interrupted them by getting up too early” (Coffer 317). The narrator then
mentions that her mother and father are having a discussion regarding going on
a vacation. The little girl’s mother says to her husband, “How about a vacation
in Puerto Rico together this year … take the time off” but the father response
is, “Mi Amor, do you known how … me to take the time off” (Coffer 317). Not
only does this little girl know that her parents are having financial struggles
trying to go and visit Puerto Rico but have other financial problems. The
narrator also knows that her parents are having financial problems because of
her, “parents feared” the landlord (Coffer 317). Throughout all these situations
the little girl encounters new traditions, culture, and fitting in what she
believes is the ideal in society.

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