Through the Eyes of a Child

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Through the Eyes of a Child Why are some people judgmental towards others? Whether we judge on race, gender, or something as simple as age, judging not only causes anguish but can leave emotional scars people never recover from. Racism is one of the most common of judgmental forms still seen today in our society. Although today we do not find racism as prominent as back in the 1920s and 1930s. When reading the story “The Angel of the Candy Counter” written by Maya Angelou, we can see the damage of racism from a child’s view, and how she dealt with the experience in order to successfully allow us to understand the negative power of racism. As a result of Angelou incorporating strategies such as ethos, pathos, shocking words, and even fantasies to bring out intense emotions she is able to connect with her audience. Clearly Angelou writes as if she is speaking to a wide range of audience. She immediately opens telling a story of a child feeling as though she is being punished with a toothache: “The Angel of the Candy Counter had found me at last, and was exacting excruciating penance for all the stolen Milky Ways, Mounds, Mr. Goodbars and Hersheys with Almonds” (146). Angelou later states, “It seems terribly unfair to have a toothache and a headache and have to bear at the same time the heavy burden of Blackness” (147). With these two statements we can conclude she is focusing on children and people of color, for both are able to establish a common ground with what they are reading. On the other hand, she emphasizes the racism being portrayed by white people, and with this we can conclude she is trying to show how acts of racism affect others hoping to open the eyes of her white audience to the problem. Although, because of the wide range of audience that will be reading her story, especially her white audience, Angelou may need to remember if she is not careful with her wording, she may alienate or anger her readers in the wrong way which may defeat her


Cited: Angelou, Maya. “The Angel of the Candy Counter.” Dreams and Inward Journeys: A Rhetoric and Reader for Writers. 6th ed. Ed. Marjorie Ford and Jon Ford. New York: Pearson, 2007. 145-50

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