Toni Cade Bambara’s ‘The Lesson’ explores inquiries of civilization and category among a group of kids and a adult female who takes them on a trip into an expensive section shop. While apparently the narrative is a simple narrative about a trip. upon farther review one realizes the elusive poignance Bambara is able to accomplish. This essay examines the narrative in footings of the alteration in the chief character Sylvia’s attitude after come ining and meeting the F. A.
O Schwartz section shop. Upon Sylvia’s entryway into F. A. O. Schwartz her sentiment and temper show a dramatic alteration. At the beginning of her entryway into the shop Sylvia continues to exhibit the flashiness and bluster that she had demonstrated before going exposed to this new environment. In these respects. Sylvia follows her friends that gag about perchance stealing points.
There is besides a elusive civilization daze exhibited as the misss question what some of the points map ; for illustration there is a conversation about a paper weight that occurs. with the supervisor holding to inform them its map. and the misss jesting about how since they have no paper they have no existent usage for the object. As the narrative continues it becomes apparent that Sylvia’s sentiment and temper are notably switching. One of the first cases in which this is apparent occurs when Bambara writes. “Hand-crafted sailing boat of fibreglass at one thousand one hundred 95 dollars.
’ ‘Unbelievable. ’ I hear myself say and am truly stunned” ( Bambara ) . This is the first case wherein Sylvia’s civilization clang is demonstrated. as she has encountered ware that is geared towards persons outside of her socioeconomic position and has therefore changed through the experience. While Sylvia had antecedently demonstrated cheeky assurance of her milieus and a general feeling of command. she now has changed in that she has begun to doubt the environing country and go self-aware about her actions.
Bambara demonstrates this in saying that after meeting the shop and the expensive ware Sylvia felt less confident about freely traveling around the environment. Possibly one of the most powerful metaphors Bambara progresss to show this displacement in Sylvia’s attitude is the comparing made between her experience in F. A. O. Schwartz and experience in a Catholic church. During her experience in the Catholic Church she besides came to experience that her assurance had been limited.
This is an interesting analogy as Bambara is bespeaking that the aura of the Catholic Church is kindred to that one finds in a section shop ; this indicates that the nature of consumer civilization has begun to busy the topographic point that faith antecedently occupied within societal being. While in great portion Sylvia maps as a storyteller in the ulterior subdivision it’s clear that the general push of her mental and emotional alteration is encapsulated in the reactions of her friends who have attempted to come to footings with the expensive shop and the nature of consumerism that the shop opened.
In decision. it’s clear that Sylvia experiences a little instance of civilization daze upon come ining F. A. O. Schwartz. While her flashiness and assurance had been exhibited earlier in the narrative. upon witnessing the expensive ware her sense of ego and topographic point shifted well. Ultimately. it is left for the reader to find what such cultural interactions entail and to pull their ain decisions. Mentions Bambara. Toni. hypertext transfer protocol: //cai. ucdavis. edu/gender/thelesson. hypertext markup language.