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Influence Of Gang- Gwendolyn Brooks' In The Mecca Essay

  • Submitted by: devilsalive
  • on December 6, 2011
  • Category: English
  • Length: 1,443 words

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Below is an essay on "Influence Of Gang- Gwendolyn Brooks' In The Mecca" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Brooks's 'In the Mecca' describes various African American people living in an apartment building in Chicago. Through her description of various characters, she tries not to create a separation of perspectives but an integration made up of various points of views. This integration deals with how social reality affected people's approach towards life. The chosen lines describe a young man, Briggs and his inability to escape gang involvement. His association in gangs is a necessity rather than a choice. Young people at the time were caught up in isolation and participation in street gangs provided them with identity and a role that contributed to the existence of others.
The section starts with a simile, “Briggs is adult as a stone,” which portrays Brigg's self containment. In response to external pressures, he has made a choice to maintain a rigid armor, thus, secluding himself emotionally. Such an existence protects him from loss. However, this nature precludes growth, empathy and community that might induce change. Being a part of a gang further estranges Briggs from the primary society(both black and white people) even further as they view gangs as a disease. But being in a repressed society, Briggs anticipates {obliteration of his identity} and thus the violent cause of joining a gang seems reasonable.
Brooks emphasizes on the motion of Briggs , “to and fro” between Mecca and the outside world, and how his actions and his outlook changed with his movement to the outside world. While in the Mecca, Briggs is apathetic towards life. But outside Mecca, he is part of the gang and is expected to act accordingly to the gang opinion. Because any individual point of view that conflicted with the gang opinion was unacceptable, he decides to use 'reticence' as a tool to avoid {dissension}. His immoderate actions in the outside world (“appease what reticences move across the intemperate range”), are based not on his opinion but on the demands of the gang. His life...

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