Black Boy Essay

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Semansky's stories, poems, and essays appear regularly in literary journals. In the following essay, Semansky analyzes the contradictions at the heart of Boyle's short story.

Boyle's concern in "Black Boy" is with social justice and the contradictions inherent in American society. She addresses these contradictions not only in the story's setting, characters, and plot, but also in its style. However, she offers no resolution to the problem of bigotry or economic inequality. Rather, the acts of remembering and expressing themselves serve as symbolic markers for the necessity of social change.

Boyle presents these contradictions through her use of juxtaposition. By placing the world above the boardwalk, populated by "rolling chairs, and women in high heels," alongside the world under the boardwalk and on the beach, where the narrator and the black boy play, Boyle highlights the differences between them. Symbolically, the boardwalk, home of the "Million Dollar...

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This section contains 1,368 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Black Boy Study Guide
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Black Boy from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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