Between the World and Me

Between the World and Me Imagery


Coates writes that his tribe was "shattering and reforming around me" (60), which is a powerful image of his intellectual and emotional development.

Prince Jones

Coates creates powerful images of Prince as a child; these include Prince attending slumber parties, playing sports, taking music lessons, and experimenting with chemistry sets. These images are sad and potent.

Paris and New York

Coates paints vivid scenes of the lively, crowded, exuberant streets of both of these cities. He does this to contrast with his own emotional state at the time, and to indicate the marvelousness of these cities and the life they celebrate and exemplify.


At Coates's Howard Homecoming game, he vividly depicts the boisterous, friendly, lively crowd of black men and women; he "melts" into it and feels at home, accepted. It is a moving image and one that serves as a reminder that he does not always get to feel like this in racialized America.