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Word Count: 982
The Lesson is considered by the Literary Canon to be a wonderful work of fiction because of its use of language humanistic theme symbolism and non-genre plot Two essential elements that add to the depth and enhance a readers comprehension of The Lesson are Bambaras use of symbolism and theme The Lesson takes place in New Yorks inner city The fictional story begins with a group of poor uneducated lower class city kids standing in front of a mailbox preparing themselves for another day of being taught by Mrs Moore Mrs Moore felt that it was her duty to help underprivileged children learn because she was one of the only women in the neighborhood to earn a degree The main character is Sylvia who tells the story in a first person narrative Sylvia is a young African American girl probably around fourteen years old who is very judgmental about the world around her By Bambaras choice of words the reader can tell that she is extremely opinionated presents a very tough hostile exterior and not at all happy about having to be taught anything by Mrs Moore For instance she states we kinda hated her too hated the way we did the winos who cluttered up our parks and pissed on our hand ball walls Bambara 121 On this hot summer day Mrs Moore felt that there was a lesson to learn at FAO Schwartz a very expensive upper class toy store in downtown Manhattan After stepping out of the cab and peering into the window Sylvia knows that this is not just any toy store and they are not just there for any reason The reason Mrs Moore brought the children to FAO Schwartz is captured in Bambaras use symbolism Outside of the toyshop the children glare at a number of very expensive toys Some of them include a paperweight and a sailboat Initially none of the children especially Sylvia knew what the paperweight
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