The Color Of Water Analysis

Topics: Family, Black people, Race, African American, White people, Racism / Pages: 4 (917 words) / Published: Oct 8th, 2015
The memoir, The Color of Water, by James McBride, is a story of two charmingly similar but also enticingly different lives. One of narrations is of James himself, describing his struggles of growing up with a “very strange mother” (9), as well as attempting to find himself as he was both black and Jewish, and was never quite sure of where exactly he fit in. The other narration is of his mother, a Jewish immigrant who has her own fair share of issues in life to deal with, as she is a white person living in a black world. McBride’s goal of his writing was to compare his own life with his mothers’ by showing the similarities, but also the differences by using both people as narrators. These two narrations help to show details of both Ruth and James' life.

To begin, the narration style of this piece is extremely effective in showing how the two lives are alike and also how they differ. Having both perspectives aids the reader, giving a firsthand glimpse at each person's thoughts by not having to go through another person to state it. One very significant difference in the lives of the two is how their fathers acted. Ruth had a father that “would get in bed with her at night and do things to her sexually that she could not tell anyone about”(42). Her father also had no love for black people, nor his own wife. James, on the other hand had two fathers, both of which were always very kind to
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This helps to show how each of these characters differ. The two points of view also run parallel to each other, which exemplifies how the two are very similar, and have faced many of the same issues in life. This memoir is used to show how two people can be of different races, ages, and genders, but also deal with the same things in life, and embrace the life they live however odd it may

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