The Crossover Short Essay - Answer Key

Kwame Alexander
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1. What are some examples of stylistic choices made by the author in the poem "Dribbling"?

This poem uses a strong rhyme scheme but notably has unusual use of capitalization and spacing that stands out. Examples are the words "MOVING and GROOVING, POPing and ROCKING" (3). Also the word "SLIPPING" is staggered across the page in a downward motion.

2. Who is Josh Bell and what role does he play in "The Crossover"?

Josh Bell is the protagonist and first-person narrator of the story. He is a 12-year-old boy who attends junior high school and plays basketball for the Wildcats, along with his twin brother, JB.

3. How did Josh Bell get his nickname? What is the significance of Josh's nickname?

Josh's nickname, "Filthy McNasty," was given to him by his father. In the poem "How I Got My Nickname," Josh describes his father giving him the name after he had criticized the jazz music of Horace Silver. Josh's father played a song called "Filthy McNasty" and gave the nickname to Josh.

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