Metaphors in "Master Harold"... and the Boys

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18 January 2012
Metaphors in “Master Harold”... and the boys
“Master Harold”... and the boys, is a powerful play written by Athol Fugard that allows us to analyze the complex relationship between a black man and a young white boy within the context of racism in South Africa in the 1950’s. This play is characterized by metaphors used by the author to illustrate the struggle of people dealing with racism. One of the most important themes of this play is racism, focusing on the injustice in South Africa when the apartheid system was in place. Racial segregation and separation in this time in history demonstrates to us how this system allowed unequal rights for whites and blacks. There is evidence that the relationship between Hally, the young white boy and Sam, the black man is complex due to the political system that was in place that supported racism, making this relationship complex and at the same time humanistic. The complexities of this relationship are shown through the authors use of effective metaphors, such as the kite and the bench, to illustrate the life experiences between Hally and Sam within the racial and political time in which they lived. Through the kite and the bench metaphors it becomes evident that Hally and Sam have problems between them as a result of racism.

A kite flying in the air controlled by two people extremely different on the outside but like father and son on the inside. The brown paper kite metaphor creates such a complex and interesting relationship between Hally and Sam. It also shows how much the political system creates such a huge effect on how people sometimes think of others with different grounds of race, no matter how close two people could be. During the time when Sam and Hally went to fly the kite, Hally was so excited to go with Sam. Although, at the same time, he was also hopeless and scared of what other people will think when seeing him with a black man trying to fly a brown-paper kite made out of trash....
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