Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
Length: 575 words (1.6 double-spaced pages)
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Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
In Mildred Taylor's enthralling novel, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, the Logan family serves as an excellent model of family values and self worth. In the face of racial and economic adversities, Mama and Papa Logan provide their children with the important lessons they need to be successful in life. First, the Logan children; Stacey, Cassie, Little Man, and Christopher-John, learn to be persistent and determined. Next, the children acquire the knowledge of caring for each other. Last, they become able to stand up for what they believe in. An example when the Logans teach their children strong work ethnic occurs when Papa explains the importance of owning their land. Cassie considers her father's words as she thinks:
For it he would work a long, hot summer pounding steel; Mama would teach and run the farm; Big Ma, in her sixties, would work like a woman of twenty in the fields and keep the house; and the boys and I would wear threadbare clothing washed to dishwasher color; but always, the taxes and mortgage would be paid.(4)
Papa's explanation to the family about working hard makes Cassie think about the sacrifices the family will have to make to keep the land. These sacrifices might be hard to make but it will be necessary to keep the land and pay taxes. Another quality is that the Logans care for each other when Stacey stands up for Little Man when Miss Crocker hands out old, dirty, and torn books. Cassie exclaims, "Yes'm, he been reading since he was four. He can't read all them big words, but he can read the columns. See what's in the last row. Please look, Miz Crocker." (18) Cassie's courage to stand up for her little brother is phenomenal. She does so even though she knows she might get whipped. Her bravery shows that she supports the fact that blacks are treated inferior to whites. Miss Crocker at first refuses to look and then she say, "well that's what you are." Miss Crocker is in a state of denial in trying to convince herself that there is no problem with the school. Last, the Logans instruct their kids to stand up for what they believe in.
This occurs when the Logans think that the Wallaces treat their black customers unfairly and they try to put them out of business. Mama says:
Everybody from Smellings Creek to Strawberry knows it was them but what do we do about it? We line our pockets with our few pennies and send our children up to their store to learn things they've got no business learning. The older children are drinking regularly there now, even though they don't have money to pay, and the Wallaces simply add charges to the family bill. (95)
Mary Logan is getting as many tenant farmers as she can to shop at Vicksburg, thus drawing them away from the Wallace store. The Logans are the only ones that can actively protest the burning of the Berry brothers because they can't be driven off their land for crossing whites. In conclusion, Mildred Taylor's thrilling and compelling book, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, teaches an important lesson about working hard, standing up for your rights and beliefs, and helping out your family members. Overall, the Logans do a great job in teaching their children to be successful in life.