All Over but the Shoutin' - Part I, The Widow's Mite, Chapters 8-15 Summary & Analysis

Rick Bragg
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Chapter eight, "In the mouth of the machine," focuses on Margaret. While the Braggs were extremely poor, Margaret did back-breaking labor all the time. She picked cotton until the cotton threshing machines came, then she did laundry, picked tomatoes and anything she could find. She rarely left the house, in part because she was afraid that her sons would be ashamed of her and in part because she didn't want to explain where her husband was. She didn't go to church for the same reason. Twenty years after Bragg's youth, she got her GED but had no education to speak of. Bragg claims that Margaret was trapped by the cultures and conventions of the South in that day. She couldn't remarry because divorce was so frowned upon. Bragg also notes that she had...

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