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Summer Book Study: The Emancipation of Evan Walls

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An aspect of being ‘gifted’ is seeing and understanding more than your peers. Evan expresses his giftedness in that fateful discussion on the screen porch when he declares that he is going to be somebody. Although he is a child, he sees the horrendous life around him if he chooses to be like everybody else. His father, a strong, intelligent man is whipped by the racism of his life circumstances. All of his parents’ peers are beaten by the terrorism of life in Canaan to where their vision of being who they can be is traumatized out of them. Only Bojack has the courage to say so.

Evan is also gifted with incredible task determination. He sacrifices his peer friendships. He endures his father’s grieving anger and the loss of his mother’s love. He lives through a constant barrage of resentment from his African American neighbors, even from the minister, a community leader, because they all conflate gaining an education with giving away your Blackness.

japplegate
sagallag1
sagallag1
Jul 18, 2022

His fortitude is truly astonishing. Jeffrey Blount does a great job depicting the agonizing and lonely position of having to choose between between cultural identity and Personhood--a choice no one should have to make. His well-intentioned but uninformed white allies don't understand either, but they don't understand in different ways. Among other things, Evan doesn't expect them to understand, but it is such a palpable betrayal when his community doesn't.

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