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Analysis Of At Risk By Amina Gautier

Amina Gautier has been awarded with Best African American Fiction and New Stories from the South; in addition, she has successfully created At Risk. Gautier’s story is based on the African American community and the different types of struggle families can realistically face. However, if a white person would have written this exact story it could have been misinterpreted and considered racist. Stereotypes such as fathers not being present, delinquencies and educational status are presented in the various short stories. “Boogiemen”, “Afternoon Tea” and “Some Other Kind of Happiness” are all examples of stories in which the father is not present. In “Boogiemen” promptly at the beginning the father abandons the family. The mother of the two…show more content…
In “The Ease of Living”, Jason’s mother decided to use the money she had saved up to send him to Florida to spend the summer with his grandfather. The mother made the decision to keep him away from the boys back home. It was the beginning of the summer and two young boys had already been killed. Jason’s friend would also sit around and smoke blunts on their spare time. Similarly, in “Dance for me” a young African American is part of a private school and due to her color the girls ask her for weed. On the contrary the protagonist didn’t even know where to buy weed from nor any of the terms related to the use of weed. In “Some Other Kind of Happiness” Teddy, the protagonist’s uncle is a drug addict attempting to pick himself up after he was left by his girlfriend. The continuous presentation of African Americans being involved with drugs and delinquencies can be offensive coming from someone of a different race. A white person making those stories would promptly be interpreted as categorizing the African American community whether those were their intentions or…show more content…
“Afternoon Tea” for instance strongly supports this stereotype. The sorority that the protagonist is presented to has a goal for these African American girls. They want to avoid having them fall into what they’re destined to. In the story, the protagonist says “their message was clear: they wanted to keep us from becoming the kind of women they would shudder to see”. (pg. 31) This scene is a perfect representation of what others perceive and assume the African Americans are bound to become. Similarly, the author represents “Held”: Kim a 16-year-old girl who already has had a child. She’s seeking advice and help from her mother to further care for her child, but her mother refuses. These two short stories demonstrate how the lack of education in the African American community can lead into pregnancy unless you try to prosper and remove yourself from that destiny. In addition, we have a similar story in which the girl already fell into the mistake and doesn’t even know how to love a child. Shows the struggle of an innocent child having to nurture a
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