Jacqueline Woodson's From The Notebooks Of Melanin Sun

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The 1996 Coretta Scott King Author Honor was presented to Jacqueline Woodson for her work From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun. The main character of the book is Melanin Sun, a thirteen-year-old boy growing up in a predominately black neighborhood in New York City. While Melanin Sun is struggling to understand various parts of life, such as dating and puberty, he mother reveals a secret to him; she is dating a white woman. From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun addresses the often controversial topic of homosexuality and interracial dating and the black communities’ views towards each. The style used by Jacqueline Woodson in From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun played a key role in helping garner the Coretta Scott King Honor. Each chapter contains two parts, the actual story and a poem or prose piece by Melanin Sun. At the beginning of the text, Melanin Sun explains that believes that writing in his journal is the best way to express himself. Therefore, his writings throughout the text display his emotions. For example, after his mom comes out to him Melanin does not speak to her; however, with the help of his poems, readers learn that Melanin is confused about the situation and chooses not to speak to avoid more conflict. Without the Melanin’s prose and poems, readers would not know his true thoughts.…show more content…
While reading Melanin Sun’s story I assumed that this novel would be stereotypical of how the black community reacts to discovering that one of their own is lesbian or gay; they make that person an outcast, thus resulting in the character moving or changing drastically. However, in From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun, various viewpoints were highlighted. Woodson depicted those who were averse to the idea along those who were supportive. I was surprised to find characters who supported Melanin Sun and his mother in this text, but I am glad that it was

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