In response to the epigraph
By far the most impactful portion from Coates' book for me was the quote from Richard Wright that was used as the epigraph, and from which Coates draws the title of the book: Between the World and Me. The epigraph so aptly and perfectly describes the book (as epigraphs are meant to do), but it goes beyond the primary theme of a caring father describing his racial experience w
In response to page 90
"This need to be always on guard was an unmeasured expenditure of energy, the slow siphoning of the essence. It contributed to the fast breakdown of our bodies.
In response to page 102
I have encountered many times in my life individuals, community members, and students who hold onto the Lost Cause ideology—that the Civil War was not about slavery but about states’ rights and that the Civil War could have had a different outcome had it not been for the defeat of the Confederacy at Gettysburg, especially with the utter failure of Pickett’s charge. Coates puts a nail in t
In response to pages 61-62
“But I would watch how black people moved, how in these clubs they danced as though their bodies could do anything, and their bodies seemed as free as Malcom’s voice. On the outside black people controlled nothing, least of all the fate of their bodies, which could be commandeered by the police; which could be erased by the guns, which were so profligate; which could be raped, beaten
What strikes me the most about Between the World and Me is how real and relevant it is to current social conditions in the U.S. Coates’ perspective makes the reader reconsider what the American Dream is, which many have sought after since the establishment of this country.
In response to pages 40-41
How does my college experience set the course for the rest of my life? Was college as transformational and affirming for me as it was for Ta-Nehisi Coates? I find myself continually asking this question when I read over this passage of the book. I attended a predominately white institution, in many ways far removed from the “Black Mecca” that Coates experienced at Howard.
In response to pages 86-87
I re-read Ta-Nehisi’s words on pages 86-87 at least 10 times. His experience on September 11, 2001 challenged everything I felt about that day. How could anyone possibly experience that day as anything but a national tragedy?
In response to page 19
In my nearly 50 years of living here in Kansas, there have been a couple of occasions where I, as my mother would say, “ran into boys looking for trouble.”
Both times involved young adults with firearms. Both times, no one was injured.
For me, these incidents made me understand how precious life can be. For some, the thought of violence happens every day.