Half-Caste

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In ‘Half Caste’ John Agard expresses his strong feelings about being treated differently for being mixed race as he has a Caribbean father and a Portuguese mother. He makes fun of the term ‘half caste’ by using the idea of him being half a person. Agard uses repetition of the phrase “Wha yu mean, when yu say half-caste” and “Explain yuself”. He is asking the audience as he thinks the term ‘half-caste’ does not make sense and he is emphesising his anger. He wants the audience to feel guilty and sympathy towards people who are mixed race. He also displays his emotions through using rhetorical questions which are also sarcastic. “you mean when Picasso mix red an green is a half-caste canvas”. This is also an example of the imagery he uses. It gives the audience visuals of the contrast of the red and green which represents black and white and he is arguing that mixing colours is a GOOD thing. He even mentions this when he says, "mix a black key wid a white key". The use of the names of the famous people makes the audience realise that he is well educated. Whilst Agard thinks that they are not smart for being prejudice which makes him feel like the better person. The language he used shows his feeling through the Carribean dialect that shows that he is proud of his heritage. Half-caste does not have any rhyming in it to show how serious the topic of the poem is. The structure has two very short stanzas at the beginning and end to make it more interesting and it keeps the audience listening. Near the end of the poem he says, "come back tomorrow wid de whole of yu eye an de whole of yu ear an de whole of yu mind." Meaning that he wants to see them again but with an open mind about the racism and see him as a whole person.
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