Sociological Analysis Of Secret Daughter

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A Sociological Analysis of “Secret Daughter”
Upon first screening Secret Daughter, I couldn’t help but consider the ways in which our society, in all of its affluence has changed very little since the 1960’s with its civil rights movement. Yes, people of color can vote, eat in whatever establishment they choose, and use public transportation without fear of being thrown off; however, there is still a deep seated mistrust between those of color and those who are white. Even as our nation has grown more affluent, we still find ourselves embroiled in race wars. How can this be? Will we ever be able to move past the color of a person’s skin in order to see the beauty of humanity that lies within each of us? When we first meet June, she has traveled
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Norma’s mother was a flapper so she was not one to hold to the social conventions of the times; however, because she was raised in a devout Mormon household, race would be the area where she would not budge. It was no surprise to me that Norma would also learn to snub her nose at those conventions that seemed ludicrous to her, such as whites not associating with blacks, but Norma’s decision to fraternize with a man of color in spite of her mother’s stance, would bring to the forefront what C. Wright Mills, in his article The Promise, coined as personal troubles and issues. For Norma, choosing to be involved with June’s father would bring up issues of character surrounding the social acceptability of a white girl consorting with a black man, especially when everywhere she looked; society, would shout unequivocally that it was not acceptable (1959). So, when she discovers that she is pregnant, she finds herself in quite the predicament. Norma is a walking contradiction in my opinion. Although there is no doubt in my mind that she loved her children, her desire for autonomy and a name, made it impossible for her to navigate the minefields of race, thanks to the Hollywood elite who would hang the framework through which Norma would…show more content…
Like many other African-American families of the past, Peggy would insinuate herself into a family. While the white community may see this family structure as lacking because there is a lack of a nucleus or male leadership, in Gender, Economy, and Kinship, we discover that much of the African-American community do not see the lack of a nuclear family as a detriment, but “Rather a source of strength, not weakness, in surviving structural adversity and disadvantage (Blumberg 2005). I would have to agree, for it would be the strength of community that would allow Peggy and her husband Paul to take in a child who was not their own and teach her the value of community. This community or “good segregation” as June calls it, would give June a place to be herself without having to question where she fit. June would eventually say that it was Peggy’s rules and decorum that would shape her ideals and open her political consciousness of race. Peggy would use the story of the Ugly Duckling to cement in June’s consciousness that while race was binding, class could be overcome. Much like June Jordan’s mother in Patricia Hill Collins article Shifting the Center, Peggy would also show June the value of hard work in creating a new line of work for up and coming black women, while providing for June the opportunities to “Pursue the privilege of books”

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