The story Constellations takes place in a prison, where a group of inmates are talking in the mess hall. K.D is obviously the leader, talking loud about his girlfriend missing him on the outside. No one else dares to contradict or answer him, except for Mohamed, which he gets consequences for.
I interpreted the story as a presentation of the differences between people of separate cultures and religions. K.D is obviously the leader of the inmates, to support this theory I will assume the story takes place in his country. Because of his sociolect, I understand him to be a typical African American male, talking about his girlfriends’ ass and glorifying her love for him.
Then Mohamed shows up and the story has its turning point. Someone is contradicting the leader of the inmates. From the first sentence that presents him, we understand that he is a muslim because of his name, and that he is inferior to K.D. We can understand this by the sentence “Mohamed must have forgotten where he was”. As a reply to this, K.D asks “Whats so funny, Africa?” Using Mohameds birthplace as a nickname creates diversity and difference between the two of them and can be seen as a typical racist remark. Mohamed is clearly not affected by this, continuing his resignation towards K.D.
He asks him a rhetorical question about why he is locked up again if his girlfriend is such a catch. Why Mohamed makes this remark can be understood by looking at the differences of their cultures. While K.D is from a place where women are more objectified, Mohameds Islamic roots may have led him to this type of attitude. Mohameds inquiry with K.D is probably something the other inmates agrees with, but does not dare to say. K.D though, as the leader he is, is not impressed with Mohameds inquiry and beats him up.
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