A Toast Before Dying Social Sensitivity

Grace F. Edwards
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The main social issue of the novel is that of race relations. Thea's mother murders her daughter in order to keep her black heritage a secret and protect her other daughter from society's prejudices. The issue of miscegenation is addressed by both Miss Adele and Marcella, in Marcella's case as an excuse for murder. Mali's harrasser, a white officer, caused her to lose her temper, strike him, and quit the force. Kendrick's arrest is convenient; the police, inundated with other murders in Harlem, do not care that they may have arrested an innocent black man.

While Mali's Harlem is busy and vibrant, much of the urban blight in Harlem is the direct result of graft and corruption during the empowerment initiatives of the 1960's and 1970's, often by white politicians and developers. The continuing segregation of society is obvious in the people who live in Harlem...

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This section contains 309 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the A Toast Before Dying Short Guide
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A Toast Before Dying from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.