Racism: African American and Henry Louis Gates

Topics: African American, Black people, Racial segregation Pages: 2 (672 words) Published: October 22, 2008
All three anti-racial activists share similar aspects on the way they view their community, but also have several differences on how they react towards it. From same backgrounds, different time periods, and different places of the United States, they each shared one major quality. They wanted to be heard and stand up for what was right for society through studies, poetry, anti-racial clubs, etc. Lawrence Otis Graham was born into an African American family, same as Henry Louis Gates Jr., and Maya Angelou. Lawrence was born twelve years later than Gates, and Maya Angelou was born thirty-four years before Lawrence. Despite the age differences, they each share similar aspects. Both Graham and Gates attended Harvard University and served their share in making an impact in the civil rights movement. As we can see, through all these short stories, Graham, Gates, and Ms. Angelou all face racial segregation and discrimination because of color. Graham’s thesis in his short essay, “The Black Table is Still There”, states that the “black” lunch table, like those other segregated tables, is a comment of the superficial inroads that integration has made in society. Graham speaks about the 27th table in his junior high school cafeteria still being known as the “black table”, fourteen years after his adolescence. Henry Louis Gates Jr. was born in 1960 in a small town in West Virginia. He was a professor of humanities and chair of the Afro-American studies department at Harvard University. Through observation and experience from Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Lawrence Otis Graham, U.S. Supreme Court handed down decisions declaring racial segregation unconstitutional in public schools. Gates and Graham both felt discrimination against African Americans were the norm in many communities, including those outside the South. Henry Louis like Graham, when younger, both felt discrimination was only alive through certain blacks or hate of the opposites due to...
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