Black Boy

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Austin Day
Leap 007, March 16, 2011
Short Paper Option 2

When we think of hunger we all think of food, we never think of hunger as something else. In today’s world, many people suffer from hunger in the form of food, but food is not the only problem involving hunger. In Richard Wrights book “Black Boy” Richard, who is a young black boy, is faced with many different types of hunger, not only for food but also for things such as love, knowledge, education, or even engagement in social and political issues. Richard, in many instances, does physically need food to relieve his hunger, but comes to the conclusion that food isn’t as important as other problems in the world such as racism and segregation. Hunger is everywhere in the world and it doesn’t matter if your young or old, black or white, or man or woman, it attacks everyone in some shape or form. Richard faces physical hunger form an early age and throughout the rest of his life. “Hunger stole upon me slowly that at first I was not aware of what hunger really meant. Hunger had always been more or less at my elbow when I played, but now I began to wake up at night to find hunger standing at my beside, staring at me gauntly. The hunger I had known before this had been no grim, hostile stranger; it had been a normal hunger that had made me beg constantly for bread, and when I ate a crust or two I was satisfied. But this new hunger baffled me, scared me, made me angry and insistent.” (Wright 14). Richard is now realizing that hunger for food is becoming a problem for him at a very young age. His physical hunger, which could easily be satisfied with a couple crusts of bread, now is a struggle for which he will have to fight for. After his father leaves, Richard soon notices a constant starvation, a constant hunger for food. “I did not want to wake up in the morning, as I had so often in the past, feeling hungry and knowing that there was no food in the house.”(Wright 50). Physical hunger has now taken over...
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