Gorilla, My Love Essay

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Bily teaches English at Adrian College in Adrian, Michigan. In this essay, Bily looks at autobiographical elements in Bambara's "Gorilla, My Love" and the broad critical questions they raise.

Toni Cade Bambara, like all writers of important literature, wrote "Gorilla, My Love" with several purposes in mind. Bambara hoped that her work would help lift up her African American readers, by presenting a positive story of a strong African American character. She hoped her white readers would profit from seeing African American characters in that light. She hoped adults would think about their relationships with young people, and she hoped young people would find courage to stand up to whatever needed standing up to. Bambara loved laughter, and because she hoped readers would find Hazel's bravado funny, she tossed out most of her first draft to give the story a more humorous tone. Bambara did not set...

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This section contains 2,008 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Gorilla, My Love Study Guide
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