Lutie and Bub

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In The Street, by Ann Petry, Lutie and her son Bub, as well as most of the characters, are clearly portrayed as victims. One is ultimately led to believe that their victimization and the barriers they face are because of race. Race is clearly the main obstacle for Lutie and Bub. It is what holds them back from leaving “the street”. Born into prejudice, they are basically prescribed a future. The three characters which best represent the victimization of African-Americans and women are Bub, Lutie, and Min. The main obstacle facing Lutie is obviously the color of her skin. This prevented her from being able to advance the way she wanted to. The fact that Lutie is a woman contributes to her struggle even further. Women have to deal with male dominance and being victimized by men, in addition to being a minority. Both Lutie and Min try to break free these constraints, but ultimately fail because the task lies deeper than within themselves. This story is a perfect example of the struggles African-Americans, and in particular, women, have to endure, and a perfect illustration of the vicious cycle that keeps them unable to achieve the lives that they wanted and worked so hard for. There was a force that was keeping African-Americans on the street, and according to Ann Petry's views, it was the system in which they were living. Lutie is faced with being a single parent. She must provide child care as well as earn money to keep her and her son alive. Her life is a double edged sword, because she needs to be at home and working at the same time: an impossible task. Because of these two factors and the invisible barriers they pose, it is impossible for Lutie to achieve the life she desires for herself and Bub. In the beginning of the story, Lutie was forced to take action and support her family because Jim could not find a job. She left her family and home and sent all her earnings to support them. In that time, it was hard enough for a woman to get a job, let alone an...
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