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The Sellout
The first book by an American author to win the prestigious Man Booker Prize.
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Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

Created: 01/18/17

Replies: 5

Posted Jan. 18, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1318

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Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname that emerged when he was competing in a spelling bee at age 11 (page 124). Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?


Posted Jan. 23, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melanieb

Join Date: 08/30/14

Posts: 86

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RE: Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

This book would be very different if it were written by a black woman. The narrator seems to be a victim. At one point, Marpessa calls him a sellout and tells him that he never sticks up for himself. The narrator allows events to happen. Marpessa and the other women in the book make things happen.


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

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 91

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RE: Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

The nickname has to do with his luck. Life treats him as if he were special. Marapessa has the control in their relationship. She calls the shots. I think the story would be very different if Marapessa told it. She has a job, children and daily responsibilities. Black women stereotypically are the glue that holds things together.


Posted Feb. 03, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Peggy H

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 188

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RE: Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

I agree that the book would be different if old from Marpessa's viewpoint. With her job, etc. she is more main stream. She also seems to be more settled in her position and life.


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

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 294

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RE: Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

I do think that Marpessa is tougher. Even today it seems that many Black athletes thank their mothers or grandmothers. In many ways I think that women of all races are tougher as they raise children, work outside the home with less opportunities than men even in 2017,keep "the homefront" running (a full time job in itself, face more age discrimination, and sometimes also deal with partners/husbands/boyfriends who are looking for a mommy.


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

Join Date: 10/13/11

Posts: 46

RE: Marpessa calls the narrator Bonbon, a lightweight nickname. Is she tougher than he is? Besides the bus, what else does she control? Would The Sellout be very different if it were narrated by a black woman?

Its difficult to compare toughness between two totally different people, circumstances and gender. Each were tough in their own way and respondent to their particular circumstances. Of course the story would have been different if told by Marpessa, not because she was so called tougher but because her story and viewpoint would have been reflective of her.


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