A Gate at the Stairs Themes & Motifs

This Study Guide consists of approximately 37 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Gate at the Stairs.
This section contains 1,627 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Gate at the Stairs Study Guide

Race

The author demonstrates through the action in the novel how race is not only used to categorize people, but also how different racial experiences are people.

Mary-Emma is a mixed-race child. She does not understand the social constructs that come with racial identifications. Whereas people see differences, e.g. the women who give Tassie and Mary-Emma a look when they see her on the street, Mary-Emma searches for similarities. She notices that she has brown eyes, just as Tassie does. She searches for commonalities as a way to connect. Tassie witnesses the reality of what Mary-Emma will experience through her life because she “saw again and again what it was simply to walk into a store for a doughnut and have a wordless racial experience” (168).

Sarah has a heightened awareness about the role the race of a child plays in adoption. She comments about children from...

(read more)

This section contains 1,627 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Gate at the Stairs Study Guide
Copyrights
BookRags
A Gate at the Stairs from BookRags. (c)2016 BookRags, Inc. All rights reserved.
Follow Us on Facebook