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I always thought I lived in a world where everyone was equal I learned about racism and sexism early in my life but it all seemed like stories and fables ending happily The north won the war slavery ended and women received the right to vote Good always succeeded over evil I lived in a bubble of liberal upper class optimism I grew up in a community in which to the best of my knowledge racism and discrimination were never an issue People went to the gym moms drove their kids to soccer Girls were allowed to play football and I was told I could do and be whatever I wanted when I grew up It was not until I was older that I learned the true meaning of the saying Life isnt fair In No Name Woman and Notes of a Native Son essays written by Maxine Hong Kingston and James Baldwin respectively their writings reflect the views of the world in which I now am aware of today Both have faced injustice in their lives and were able to overcome the restriction of traditional society and cultures by choosing their own path and method of breaking with these restrictions Baldwin overcomes hate and racism and Kingston overcomes sexism and strong traditional Chinese restrictions Baldwin appears to have a similar experience to mine in that he was unaware of racism until he left his home town of Harlem He grew up in a bubble of optimism too He saw the effects of racism on his father but never believed that one day it would come to haunt him too Baldwin experiences racism for the first time when he leaves home to work in Jersey among whites and blacks from the south He is treated like a lesser person he was refused service at every store Everywhere he went he was told We dont serve Negroes here Reader pg 9 This kind of treatment
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