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Double-consciousness, double vision, and socialized ambivalence in The Sport of the Gods and The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man - Essay Example

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The book The Autobiography of an Ex-coloured Man was written by James Weldon Johnson in the year 1912 and the book The Sport of the Gods was written by Paul Lawrence Dunbar in the year 1902. The concepts of double-consciousness, double vision, and socialized ambivalence were…
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Double-consciousness, double vision, and socialized ambivalence in The Sport of the Gods and The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man
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Download file to see previous pages oloured Man the concepts of double vision, double consciousness and socialized ambivalence are evident as to how they affect the behaviour of the central character, the narrator, with regard to the choices he makes and the different emotions he feels right from his early childhood to his middle age. The narrator was born to a white father and a black mother. His father refused to acknowledge both his mother and the narrator and married another white woman. Being disregarded by his own father for being half black made it clear to the author that coloured individuals don’t often find acceptance in the society which lead him to ‘pass out as a white’ (Johnson 107).
The narrator faced yet another embarrassing situation in school when the principal of his class asked all white students to stand and when he stood up un-knowingly – he asked him to sit down, an act of discrimination by the principal who was supposed to be a role model for the students surely convinced the narrator to be socially ambivalent to avoid being embarrassed and disregarded by people in general. Social ambivalence and double consciousness is observed in the narrator’s behaviour further when he accompanies his employer to Berlin where he sees a German composer turn a piece of ragtime into classical music. It then hits the narrator that he should go back to the United States to open work as an African American composer.
The narrator’s passion for music and better prospects as an African American individual of passing off as a composer introduces socialized ambivalence into his life yet again and he tells his employer about his decision who warns him about the hardships he would have to face as an African American. However, the narrator decides to go to the US where he witnesses a mob of white people burn an African American guy to death which makes him forget his passion for music and his decides to be a white (Johnson 145). He falls in love with a white woman and the shame he feels in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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