Both Assignment 1 & 2 based on the reading “Between the world and Me”
Before completing this activity, be sure you’ve read at least the first 75 pages of BTWAM. You can then proceed to this synthesis activity that asks to to scan beyond those pages for what Coates has to say about the Dream and Dreamers. Being able to summarize his definition will be an important part of writing your introduction for this essay, as it is a way to inform your readers about what Coates believes.
Please read all of the following excerpts of quotes (look up the whole quote if needed) –and synthesize whatever seems most important to you. Come up with a one to two sentence summary of Coates’ view of the Dream and/or Dreamers. Then, include a question–maybe a struggle you faced writing the summary and ask each other for advice. Post a response on one of your classmate’s posts /questions/concerns. Please make at least three posts, each post at least 100 words starting with your summary w/ a question and then two responses of substance to classmates.
- -The Dream is tree houses and the Cub Scouts. The Dream smells like peppermint but tastes like strawberry shortcake. (11)
- -The Dream rests on our backs, the bedding made from our bodies. ( 11)
- -The Dream thrives on generalization, on limiting the number of possible questions…. The Dream is the enemy of all art, courageous thinking, and honest writing. (50)
- -Blacks can be influenced by white Dreamers, particularly in police departments and enforcement. (53)
- – The Dream was to get rid of slavery through The Civil War but in reality, slavery never ended and there is still racism today. (102)
- -The Dreamers don’t consider minorities (fear or anger) in their optimism of the future (106)
- -The killing fields of Chicago, of Baltimore, of Detroit were created by the policy of Dreamers, but their weight, their shame, rests solely upon those who are dying in them. (110-111)
- -The Dream seemed to be the pinnacle, then– to grow rich, live in one of those disconnected houses out in the country, in one of those small communities, one of those cul-de-sacs with its gently curving ways… (116)
- -The Dream seemed to be the end of the world for me, the height of American ambition (116)
- -Black people were bound because they suffered under the weight of the Dream. (119)
- -…the Dreamers are pillaging ferguson for municipal governance. … and the Dreamers are quoting Martin Luther King and exulting -nonviolence for the weak and the biggest gus for the strong. The Dreamers accept [Prince Jones’ killing] as the cost of doing business, accept our bodies as currency, because it is their tradition. (131)
- -Today, when 8 percent of the world’s prisoners are black men, our bodies have refinanced the Dream of being white. Black life is cheap, but in America black bodies are a natural resource of incomparable value. (132)
- -At Howard University Homecoming, Coates felt joy beyond the Dream. (149)
- -Do not struggle for Dreamers. Hope for them. Pray for them if you are so moved. But do not pin your struggle on their conversion. The Dreamers will have to learn to struggle themselves, to understand that the field for their Dream, the stage where they have painted themselves white, is the deathbed of us all. (151)
Two student posts and need to write a response for each of them.
Coates believes Dreamers are people who want and believe the American Dream exist because America is the land of the free & you can achieve “the dream” if you work hard enough but don’t realize that America was built through the exploitation of black people.
Coates was almost shot when he was younger. Thankfully the kid with the gun never pulled the trigger but Coates felt how easily it was for his life to be selected by the streets. Has anyone had a close encounter with death? If so, what happened and did the encounter change you in any way?
Coates’ believed the Dream and Dreamers were given and biased. That the blacks were all condemned to this life, this “dream” they were forced to live in and that the whites took it upon themselves to take over and control their freedom. He believed the Dream spoken of, was an outcome of his prior generations diligent hard work and perseverance. If they were not stolen, beaten, enslaved and put into this degrading position that this whole Dream would cease to exist.
How would you interpret his metaphor “The Dream is tree houses and the Cub Scouts. The Dream smells like peppermint but tastes like strawberry shortcake”?
I attached the discussion question pdf below