Module 9: Discussion Forum I: Building on (a Character’s) Details
Racial Metamorphosis I
Chesnutt, Charles (United States).
“Mars Jeems’s Nightmare”
Barrett, A. Igoni (Nigeria). Blackass. Graywolf Press, 2015. From the beginning to the section break on page 120.
The purpose of this discussion is similar to the previous ones that we’ve done in this series (you’ll have to
, for example) but with one major difference. Up to this point, we’ve mainly been treating details as symbols to decode that give us access to the meaning of the work. Since we are still at the relatively early stages of the book, we don’t necessarily know where it is going or what statement, in symbolic form, that it will ultimately offer us. Moreover, novels, especially character-driven ones, like Blackass, often use their opening chapters or sections to shape their readers’ perceptions and feelings about their protagonists, which may be undercut or reinforced by events later on in the narrative.
In this forum, you will choose a concrete narrative or textual detail (or two) that you think reveals a defining feature of Blackass’s protagonist Furo Wariboko, and you will relate this feature or aspect of his character to what you think Barrett wants us to think about him overall at this stage of the novel. You may post your response after reading the opening section of the book (“Furo Wariboko”) or after you’ve completed all of the reading required in this module. You may consider what he does or says or thinks that makes him likable or unlikable; just please bear in mind that our goal in this forum is to better understand Barrett’s intentions with the character. It is always possible to dislike a character that the author of a work clearly wants us to like (maybe we aren’t into boy scouts, Superman!) or vice versa, but generally we can distinguish between effect and intended effect if there is such a gap.
Please Order Post in the Following Way:
1. Situate your example (i.e. supply a brief description of the narrative and/or textual context from which you are drawing it). (1-2 sentences.)
2. Convey your example (i.e. quote what is and only what is relevant or provide a concrete and specific description of your example); provide an in-text MLA citation for it.
3. Analyze this example for what it reveals about Furo’s character and how we are supposed to feel about this particular feature it reveals. (1-2 sentences)
4. Briefly, relate your preceding analysis to your broader sense of Furo and what Barrett wants us to think of him so far in the book. (1-2 sentences)
· Length: Your post should be at minimum 150 words.
· Format: You will post your comment directly in the appropriate discussion forum, so use the default formatting (font type, etc.) for the discussion board.
· Citations: Use
MLA in-text citations (Links to an external site.)
for textual evidence that refers to the page numbers in the a
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