Washington Black

In the novel, Wash experiences overt and brutal racism while at other times, well-intentioned (perhaps) white people are tone-deaf to the impact of their words on Wash and the potential offense and real pain their words bring him. Write a paper that explores racism vs tone-deafness in Washington Black. You may argue they are both examples of racism. Make sure to carefully examine his relationship with Titch. Then, educate yourself on societal white tone-deafness, and propose a solution that has broader implications for social healing. You should also take time to consider how Titch, though he physically frees Wash, is responsible for Wash’s mental and psychological oppression and argue whether Wash overcomes the oppression and how. (a growing list of potential research terms: institutional racism, white fragility, power of words, objectification, Marxism and critical race theory)   In “The Silencing of Black Scientists,” Edugyan asks, “If science is like a conversation, what is lost in the silences?” Write a paper that explores how the book answers that question by tracing the development of Wash’s voice. Educate yourself on other examples and their implications of lost black genius from history, and explain how these examples fit the broader “so what?” In other words, why should we care about inclusivity in the sciences? (terms: colonized black bodies, colonized black minds, lost black bodies, lost black minds, inclusivity)

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