The Color of Water

Symbols

Black Power

James spoke of the civil rights movement which foreshadowed his decision to lean towards the African-American side of his bi-racial identity. Many of his older siblings had also chosen to only acknowledge that they were African-American

Ruth's bicycle

This symbolized her constant need for movement in order to deal with her stress and depression and escapism.

Ruth's mother's song: Love of Birds

When Ruth's mother sang the song "Birdie, birdie, fly away," she was referring to Ruth as the bird, able to move so swiftly and easily, while she referred to herself as the handicapped bird who deserved to be sacrificed and killed. This foreshadowed her death.


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