Black Boy

Chapter 5

What difference between town blacks and plantation blacks does Richard become aware of through his job selling insurance?

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Towards the end of summer, Richard obtains a job as an assistant to an insurance agent named Brother Mance. He fills out forms for illiterate blacks on plantations who wish to buy insurance. On his trips to the plantations, Richard is astonished at the ignorance and naivete of the plantation families he meets. The money Richard is able to earn disappears quickly and Brother Mance dies, leaving Richard jobless once again. Richard begins the seventh grade and feels his old hunger once again.