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By: lee-lee


A Summary of William Raspberry's 'The Handicap of Definition' Paris Owens Essay2: Second Summary En112c.002 Dr. Butler March 2, 2000 A Summary of William Raspberry's 'The Handicap of Definition' In 'The Handicap of Definition' William Raspberry emphasizes the stereotype of what it means to be Black. Raspberry uses many beliefs that has taken a toll on African Americans on the definition of being Black. Raspberry uses many comparisons to compare blacks to whites and other ethnics. He begins off by using basketball as an example. Raspberry quotes, 'If a basketball fan says that Boston Celtics' Larry Bird plays black the fan intends it and Bird probably accepts it as a compliment'(543). He also emphasizes 'if you tell a white broadcaster he talks black he'll sign up for diction lessons'(543). Raspberry explains how many children think hard study and hard work are white (543). He tells how scrimping today in the interest of tomorrow's goals is white'(543). Raspberry uses many of these comparisons in the essay. Raspberry talks about incredible array of habits done by different ethnic groups. He confesses ''black youngsters tend to do better at basketball, for instance, is that they assume they can learn to do it well, and so they practice constantly to prove themselves right (543). Raspberry emphasizes the importance of developing positive ethnic traditions (544). He tells how people suspect Jews have an innate talent for communications (544). People make assumption that Chinese are born with a gift for mathematical reasoning (544). Raspberry thinks we are ''raising up yet another generation of young blacks who will be failures by definition'(544). Raspberry concludes the essay referring to blacks in the work force. He says, 'many of the things about which blacks make this assumption are things that do not contribute to their career success-except for that handful''(544). Raspberry explains in the essay, we have to show our kids how to make it in American mainstream, not just black subculture (544). Raspberry finishes by explaining, 'we have to make our children understand that they are intelligent, competent people, capable of doing whatever''(544). Work Cited Raspberry, William. 'The Handicap of Definition.' Washington Post 1982. RPT. In The Macmillian Reader 5th ed. Judith Nadell, John Langan, and Linda McMeniman. Boston: ...

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