Black women weren’t even allowed to keep their child even if they birthed them! White women and Black women were both struggling at gaining rights. During the early 19th Century women didn’t have the right to vote which created much frustration among women, they even weren’t allowed to run for the presidency just because they are a different gender. In the 19th Century men believed that women’s only job was to clean and cook for the family. Women in general back in the 19th Century didn’t have many rights, but Black women were definitely on the short end of the stick if you compared the rights between Black and White women.
Twyla says that “my mother won’t like you putting me here”. Then Twyla is talking about that her mother has told her “that they never washed their hair and they smelled funny. Roberta sure did. Smell funny, I mean,” the assumptions one might make from this is that Twyla’s mother have a racist view about the other race, however this tell very little about which race the protagonists has. On the other hand during the first meeting between the protagonist’s mothers, it is Roberta’s mother who acts in a racist’s way; instead of shaking Twyla’s mother’s hand she looks down at both Twyla and her mother then grabs Roberta and walks away.
Whites and blacks are not supposed to be friends because of a “line” that exists that separate them. But because of this “line” of separation, all the white ladies have black maids that help with the cleaning and caring of their children. Racial boundaries are manifestations in our own minds, like they are between Hilly and Aibileen. Therefore, relationships are formed by caring and having common interests for one another, like Aibileen and Skeeter do, while Hilly bases friendships on power and dominance. Aibileen works for Elizabeth, so Aibileen has to take care of her daughter, Mae Mobley.
Yet, at the same time, we are always subject to someone else's perceptions, constructions, and names. What identity comes to mean, then, arises out of a particular set of social circumstances at any given time, out of which differences are deemed important enough to be named by either oneself or by others. For writers like Hurston, the moment of being called on as different, of being named, leads to a growing self awareness of what it means to be called "colored" in a white dominated society, and of how blackness can be performed in her social
In addition, there was also racial discrimination in “The Welcome Table” written by Walker. This short too tells a story of an old African American woman who just wants to be closer to the Lord. She doesn’t see anything wrong with going to church, but when she steps in the wrong church, the same church with all the babies and people she helped raise and take care of, they throw her out because of the color of her skin. It was pretty sad when we read these stories. Although each had a different tone and setting to how each one ended.
In Catherine, Called Birdy, many women gave Birdy advice but she never really listenened to them, but when she did, she made a decision that changed her life forever. Her mother told her “Don't Stretch your legs longer than your stockings or your toes will stick out. You are so much already, Little Bird. Why not cease you fearful pounding against the bars of your cage and be content?” In other words, she is saying that she needs to be happy with what she has because what she has is all she needs. Also that she needs to stop trying to be who she is not.
She had no confidence in her mother growing up, and saw her as a “limit” and an “embarrassment”. Later in Tan’s life, she found several surveys which led her to realize that she was not alone; there were other Asian-Americans who may have shared the same struggles as her. Tan creates a symbolic diction through the use of words like “broken”, “limited”, and “fractured”. She is very repetitive with her use of these words, although she explains how she hated when people described her mother’s english that way. Although Tan knows that the way her and her mother converse is not grammatically correct, she has grown to love it.
Collins and other theorist, poets, and writers that Black women can be and are “agents of knowledge” dismiss this idea of Eurocentric masculinist knowledge. Historically, blues singers, poets, autobiographers, storytellers, and orators were the only Black women who were validated by other Black women as agents of knowledge. She discusses the conflicting standards of three key groups of Black women scholars that want to develop Afrocentric feminist thought. Ordinary Black women are the first key group that must validate the ideas surrounding Black feminist thought. Black feminist must have personal life experiences, must interact with the ordinary Black woman to develop deeper thoughts and ideas, and must maintain accountability for their work and whatever backlash it might receive.
They were at least older than 40 and so was the Asian lady. I thought to myself, maybe she didn’t want to sit there because she is scared of “black” people. I made this assumption because I was raised in an Asian household and my aunty would always talk down on African Americans, even though I am part African American. She would always say they’re bad people and I feel like she gets this from what she sees in movies or in the media. So I thought maybe that’s why the Asian lady did not want to sit there.
Maggie selflessly insists that her sister can have the quilts (128). Maggie is also not a very strong character; instead she stays in the background most every situation that she can. For example, Dee and her friend rapidly approached the house in their car. “Maggie attempts to make a dash for the house…” but her mother quickly takes hold of her, making sure that she does not escape. Maggie was very uneasy around her sister; her mother tells her anxiousness in regard to Dee’s visitation: “Maggie will be nervous until after her sister goes: she will stand hopelessly in corners, homely and ashamed of the burn scars down her arms and legs, eyeing her sister with a mixture of envy and awe” (119).