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Word Count: 431
In reading the story Like a Winding Sheet by Ann Petry we see that the character of Johnson feels imprisoned The imprisonment that he feels comes from different areas his job his perceptions and his own helplessness in the face of control that he feels from women His job is a source of imprisonment because he is at the mercy of the shift change the pain in his own body and he feels that if he were able to make changes in the way his job was done he wouldnt feel the pain As it is there is a sense of helplessness because he is not free to make the changes He perceives that incidents happen to him because of his race Examples of this are the reactions that he feels in his arms and hands when his forelady makes the statement And the niggers is the worse I dont care whats wrong with your legs You get here on time Im sick of you niggers- He doesnt realize that the statement may have been nothing personal just a reaction from her own bad day Another example is when the white girl at the counter in the restaurant tells him no more coffee for a while he believes that it is because of his race not because there is no more coffee A third example is when Mae makes the statement Youre nothing but an old hungry nigger trying to act tough and- He doesnt see it for the teasing that it was At the beginning of the story we see that he feels controlled by Mae because even though she pointed out to him that he needed to hurry or he would be late she makes him even later by having to convince her to go to work even though it was Friday the thirteenth because it was payday and that cant be unlucky anywhere He also feels controlled by his job
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