Cherub Chopp Stewart posted about her experience as a substitute teacher yesterday on another social network wall in light of Dr. King’s birthday, but also applies to characters in The Bluest Eye. How do her students’ actions compare/contrast with the children in The Bluest Eye? Have you experienced something similar?
“so i taught 3rd grade for 5 years, and 1st grade in the last of the 5th year, now i make music and have liberated myself from the failing system…so for now i stay in touch wit the youth thru occasional substitute teaching and etc. (i wont list my current resume)…well the story begins here, it never fails…every time i go sub, and when i taught full time, there would always be a black child calling another darker skinned child “you black!” as if it were an insult, also i am always asked by some outspoken sprout, with a hopeful tone, “what are you?!” and i proudly respond “im black, black on both sides”…and usually the child looks saddened by my lack of whiteness or says “you black?!”…it happened today, yesterday and the school days last week…to this “you black” i usually respond with a quick story of lineage and statements about how we all originated from the very deepest of blacks…ALL OF US, including white folks, i encourage them to research this…i also remind these beautiful black babies that if they dislike the variations in color of others then they are in turn expressing self hatred. the once hopeful face, turned sad, becomes inquisitive…please teach these babies about race, its origin, and its true nature (ultimately as a social construct)…all the ends and outs…cuz yo, we…we aint there yet, ya know to the place dear bratha Martin spoke of”
-Cherub Chopp Stewart