The Shaping of yourself
In our life, there are a variety of ways that will shape our identities, lives and the way we perceive new ideas. This can either be determined by a role model or personal experiences. In Mike Rose’s reading “ I just wanna be average” and Ta-Nehisi Coates “Between the World and Me” both writers tell us the stories of experiences that shaped them. In the article, Coates’s youth was filled with fear and protecting your own self. His neighborhood and others were run by gangs that ruled using others fear of dying to create power for themselves to create reputations that they were known by. For Rose’s, he could see that his life compared to the perfect life was not his reality. He lived a life of poorness and always worrying about money. He saw what the difference from this illusion compared to his life as something that felt fanciful and could only be imagined as.
In our class, we started off with Coates “ Between the World and Me” which confronts the rough times living in a neighborhood that was filled with gangs and violence. In his life, he learned from his surroundings and was able to form his own sense of life and his visualization of the American dream. Coates expresses “It does not matter that the intentions of an individual Educators were Noble. Forget about intentions. What an institution or its agents in 10 for you is secondary. Our world is physical. Learn to play defense -ignore the head and keep your eyes on the body. Very few Americans will directly Proclaim that they are in favor of black people being left to the streets. But a very large number of Americans will do all they can to preserve the dream. No one directly proclaims that schools were designed to Santa fi failure and destruction. But a great number of educator spoke of personal responsibility and a country authored and sub stained by criminal irresponsibility. The point of this language of intention and personal responsibility is Broad X and ocean. Mistakes were made. Bodies were broken. People were saved. We meant well. We tried our best. Good intentions are a hall pass through history a sleeping pill that ensures the dream.” For Coates, the American dream is people have easily chosen to ignore the fact that the black race is being left on the streets and bodies are being broken/killed. The American dream is built on the enslavement of the black race and even our schools today are designed for failure and destruction of this population. Within Coates, he opens up about how the school was shielding them of reality. The school would block off their access from the outside world. This system would do this so the students wouldn’t know and wouldn’t ask questions. The number of educators that have taken the responsibility into keeping our schools safe and have the intention of personal responsibility is where mistakes have been made. School for people in these neighborhoods was more than a place to learn but as an escape from their reality that they were living in and another way to protect themselves from the streets. Coates for a while questioned himself and the school on why he was in this classroom learning ideas that may not have mattered but it was to protect him from his own reality and what he faced everyday living in Baltimore. Learning these new skills helped the students better discipline to their bodies and even though it felt all new and strange to him there were benefits in the end.
In Mike Rose’s writing, he talks about role models that helped him shape who he is. For Rose’s Jack McFarland was a role model on his pathway to success. He was able to turn Rose’s mindset of how he thought of school into appreciating the knowledge. Rose’s speak about Mcfarland saying“ It enabled me to do things in the world. I could browse Bohemian bookstores and Farah calls my mysterious Hollywood I could go to the cinema and see if vents through the lens of European directors and most of all I could share an evening talk that talk with Jack McFarland the man I most admired at the time. Knowledge was becoming a bonding agent. Within a year to the Persona of the disaffected Hipster would prove too cynical to alienate to last. Before our time it was new and exciting it provided a critical perspective on society and it allowed me to act as though I were living beyond the limiting boundaries of South Vermont.” He was able to take what he was taught and be able to see what knowledge has done for him as far as stepping outside the boundaries of what he knows and using it to see what society is really like. Jack Mcfarland wanted these students to succeed and not to see them struggle because, in the end, the way your students do reflects what teacher you are at the end of the day. He turned Ross’s way of using his mind to interest him in reading and creating stories and used his weakness to make him stronger.
For both of the writers, stories were illustrated for us to see how we are shaped like human beings. In Coates story, he wasn’t able to have a teacher like Jack to teach him the knowledge that he needed. Coates talks about how even though he is living in America he feels that when he was a kid America was like a galaxy where there were different parts of the US that weren’t like his and people didn’t feel enslaved as he did. In other parts of the US, people didn’t have to protect themselves as much as he did. For Rose’s, he was able to take what he was taught and be able to see what knowledge has done for him as far as stepping outside the boundaries of what he knows and using it to see what society is like. Jack Mcfarland wanted these students to succeed and not to see them struggle because, in the end, the way your students do reflects what teacher you are at the end of the day. He turned Ross’s way of using his mind to interest him in reading and creating stories and used his weakness to make him stronger. In Coates story he wasn’t able to have a teacher like Jack to teach him the knowledge that he needed, Coates had to do it on his own because the teachers he had would cover what was going on in his reality but Jack embraced it.
Rose, Mike. “Live on The Boundary.” Https://Ericdrown.uneportfolio.org/Wp-Content/Uploads/Sites/5/2018/12/Coates_BetweenTheWorldandMe_Excerpt.Pdf, 1989, ericdrown.uneportfolio.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2018/12/Coates_BetweenTheWorldandMe_Excerpt.pdf.
Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me. ericdrown.uneportfolio.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2018/12/Coates_BetweenTheWorldandMe_Excerpt.pdf.