Lies We Tell Ourselves Themes & Motifs

Talley, Robin
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Racial Inequality and Prejudice

Talley uses the theme of racial inequality and prejudice to highlight the disparity in the way people treat the characters of different races. The setting of Davisburg, Virginia in 1959 serves to exemplify a location where the majority of the population has well-established views and biases. Most of the white adult characters view black people as inferior, so they taught the next generation these beliefs. The white students at Jefferson High School often use these learned values to justify their unequal treatment of their black peers. One example in which the school administration decided to distinguish the new black students is when they place Sarah and her peers in Remedial classes. Sarah reflects, “I wonder if they put us in these classes because they think we’re stupid or because they wanted to punish us for coming here in the first place” (39). This demonstrates...

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This section contains 1,742 words
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