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The Sellout
The first book by an American author to win the prestigious Man Booker Prize.
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Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

Created: 01/24/17

Replies: 8

Posted Jan. 24, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
renem

Join Date: 12/01/16

Posts: 88

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Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

On page 138, Marpessa dismantles the car industry's fantasyland ads featuring affluent black men.


Posted Jan. 24, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sallyh

Join Date: 09/07/12

Posts: 85

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RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

I think that depends on where one is located. Both race and class are problems; in the U.S., race is the bigger problem, but in some other countries it's class.


Posted Jan. 25, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PiperUp

Join Date: 10/27/15

Posts: 71

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RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

I think there is often a double whammy aspect for other races in the US. Yes, there are white poor people...but...they're not as bad off sometimes because...at least they're white. They may not feel as if they're privileged in any way but doors open to them that don't always open to other races. I think in most places in the US...it's better to be poor & white than to be poor & not white. It may not occur all the time & everywhere, but often having white skin often "earns" you a more respectful treatment by others. So even if you're dirt poor...in some areas of the US, people are nicer to dirt poor white people than to dirt poor non white people.


Posted Jan. 25, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
joanp

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 91

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RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

I agree with PiperUp. It's better to be poor/white than poor/black and in most cases it's better to be white than any class black unless it's a black athlete or entertainer.


Posted Jan. 25, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
shirleyl

Join Date: 06/01/11

Posts: 18

RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

Race and class are both problems in the United States. An additional problem is the two get conflated and that causes yet more problems.


Posted Jan. 26, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
joyces

Join Date: 06/16/11

Posts: 397

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RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

I think also that it is both. I am old enough to know things are much better for black people now than they were fifty years ago but there are areas, usually large metropolitan, where there are a lot of blacks who are being treated as second class citizens. The class thing is still around too but the lines between middle class and upper class are getting a little blurred. And I am not sure what lower class really means anymore.


Posted Jan. 27, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
GERRYD8784

Join Date: 01/27/17

Posts: 2

RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

Have to agree with PiperUp. Race and class are both problems in US, and it's not always possible to distinguish which is more problematic, since racial and class biases are often intertwined. In general, though, it's tougher to be black and poor in America than white and poor. And lots of negative assumptions are still made about middle and upper class blacks that would never be made about middle and upper class whites.


Posted Jan. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
SusanB

Join Date: 04/28/11

Posts: 7

RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

Agree with Piper, both class and race are still major problems in this country, just look at the last election to see the class divide, wealth also creates its own class.


Posted Feb. 08, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 310

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RE: Laura Jane tells Marpessa she's "far too smart not to know that it isn't race that's the problem but class". Is Laura Jane right?

within the United States, race often determines opportunities or lack of opportunities which create "class." And, sadly, in the USA having money is often confused for having REAL "class" - manners, decency, honesty.


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