Identify an instance where characters use blackness as an insult. Why do you think this is? Does this surprise or worry you?
Students will likely point to the moment when the three young boys tease Pecola. They make fun of her for being black even though they are black themselves. This points to a theme in the book of internalized racism. The black boys have come to believe that blackness is as bad as society has led them to believe. Some students may say they do not understand why the boys would tease Pecola for belonging to a racialized group they also belong to. Students who have not witnessed any clear examples of internalized racism may express confusion while...
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