The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963: Themes (For the Most Part) Quiz.

There is discrimination beyond race, as well. Performance & security by Cloudflare, Please complete the security check to access. Wilona sends extra sandwiches in Kenny’s lunch when she learns he is sharing his food with Rufus (p. 144). Images do not help in understanding the theme. Characters constantly make judgements based on superficial characteristics, and it is only when people look more deeply at one another that discrimination is overcome—as when Kenny gets to know Rufus, beyond his accent and lack of money, for example. In Flint, the Watsons are not particularly affected by racism or prejudice, but once they go south to visit Birmingham, it becomes another story.

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68-74). When Kenny offended his only friend, Rufus, Momma was sensitive to the subtle change in Kenny and helped him talk about what was troubling him.
Some aspects of this transformation are not always good; Kenny loses much of his innocence after witnessing the church bombing, and even though he is consequently wiser, he may not necessarily be better off.

He can’t wrap his mind around the motivation behind the attack, and Byron tries to explain it to him, saying, “I think they just let hate eat them up and turn them into monsters” (p. 200). The kids also discriminate against Kenny because of his lazy eye, and amazing reading ability. Free, fun, and packed with easy-to-understand explanations! Teachers may opt to lower the security if they want to allow sharing. All storyboards and images are private and secure. This pricing structure is only available to academic institutions. Another way to prevent getting this page in the future is to use Privacy Pass. Children would … Kenny is lucky to have not personally experienced much race discrimination in Flint, so the reader—experiencing the story through his eyes—comes to an awareness of racism as Kenny does.

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Later in the novel, Kenny nearly drowns and sees a “Wool Pooh”, which symbolizes death. Both boys grow and mature throughout the story. In the end, Bryon helps Kenny move through this crisis, explaining, “Kenny, things ain’t ever going to be fair…But you just gotta understand that that’s the way it is and keep on steppin’” (p. 203).

Kenny has to come to grips with the senselessness behind this extreme form of racial discrimination, in order to return to living. This is a character-driven story, which gives the reader a slice of family life, through Kenny’s eyes, as he comes to understand the power that lies in familial love. After Kenny is exposed to this horrible truth of life, he is deeply affected; he is forever changed after witnessing the church bombing, because for the first time he realizes how someone's skin color, a characteristic that is completely beyond individual control, can elicit so much hate in the hearts of others.

At the beginning of the story, he shows his childish nature by reveling in opportunities to tease his brother, and more or less being obedient. Rufus and his brother, however, do not have quite so much when they arrive in Flint.

Put your knowledge to the test. This is a character-driven story, which gives the reader a slice of family life, through Kenny’s eyes, as he comes to understand the power …
Copyright © 1999 - 2020 GradeSaver LLC. What does Kenny tell Byron he feels ashamed about? The opening scene where the family huddles on the couch freezing, because the landlord hasn't fixed the heat is a good example of the closeness the Watsons have. 177-179).

All themes are correctly identified and described.


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