The Color Of Water Analysis

Pages: 3 (726 words) Published: January 19, 2018


“As a boy, I never knew where my mother was from.” James McBride’s memoir, The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother, talks about James’ and his mother’s culture and identity. In the book, both Ruth and James were able to overcome obstacles in order to resolve both internal and external conflicts in their lives.
In this memoir, James McBride where interviews his mother, Ruth, about her past. This memoir tells an intertwined story of James’ childhood and Ruth's life. While James’ stories were long ant told in detail; Ruth’s stories were short and blunt.
Firstly, Ruth’s intermediate family wasn’t made of love. Also, with both of her husbands deceased, Ruth tries to raise 12 kids on her own. Ruth clarifies “My parents’ marriage was part together by a rov… love had nothing to do with it.”(15) Ruth’s parents didn’t get married with love, but for business. This acknowledges the fact this obstacle led Ruth running to find love. James cites, “Her job through two marriages… had been to mother her children; but now she had to run a family, and she was learning late.” (182) Not only did Ruth’s job for two marriages was to be a mother to her children but also she had to run a family. Ruth had 8 kids during her 1st marriage but...

On page 22, it says, “We were all clearly black… Mommy was, by her own definition,”light-skinned”.” This analysis shows that James figured out that his mother didn’t look like him or any of his siblings. He was dark-skinned with curly brown hair which his mother didn’t have. This confused James on who he was and what his real culture was. Also, James’ race and the skin of his mother confused him on what he is. Page 161 says, “Like my own mother did in the time of stress, I turned to God.” This hints at during his time of need, James turned to god to get back on track and focus on the stuff that should matter. God/religion helped James through life and to get on the right...
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