Recitatif By Toni Morrison Literary Analysis

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Racism is a theme that is constantly brought up in in American literature today. The story “Recitatif” by Toni Morrison, addresses the racial awareness and topics of prejudice. The story is about two orphans, Twyla and Roberta, of separate races who grew up during the Civil Rights era. They instantly became friends because they are the only two girls in the orphanage whose mothers are still alive. Although the girls are each from a different class, that doesn’t get in the way of their friendship. From time to time as they got older, Twyla and Roberta would meet again. Things were going good between them until the local school started integrating and they began to protest on opposite sides. As the story ends, they come to terms about their past and comfort…show more content…
All we know is that she is mute, possibly deaf, and may be mentally challenged. Because of Maggie’s disability, she gets beaten up by a group of girls. Roberta and Twyla witnessed the beating of Maggie and didn’t do anything to stop it. They didn’t necessarily participate in it, but they didn’t get help either. At one point during the story Roberta admits to Twyla that she wanted to be apart of the beating. She says, “ We didn’t kick her. It was the gar girls. Only them. But, well, I wanted to. I really wanted them to hurt her… It was just that I wanted to do it so bad that day-wanting to is doing it” (Morrison 213). Twyla also admits to herself that she wanted to do it too. She says, “I didn’t kick her; I didn’t join in with the gar girls and kick that lady, but I sure did want to” (Morrison 212). The fact that these two eight year old girls wanted to be a part of such a thing, and had the urge to hurt someone, is what really got to me. The girls were able to get through the race and class conflict, but the cruelty to attack someone with a disability is another situation to bring up. Why would these little girls think its okay to take advantage of a

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