Racism is a belief or doctrine inherent differences among the various human races determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the belief that one’s own race is superior and has the right to rule others (Dictionary. com). Unfortunately racism has been around for all of our lives. We have learned to discriminate others because of skin color, language, customs, place of birth or any factor that supposedly reveals the basic nature of that person.
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Most humans know that discriminating others is bad but we still do it, to make us feel better or because we consider ourselves superior than others. We consider ourselves normal but we see others as less of a person because they don’t meet our standards. Humans are good at judging and discriminating others because humanity is created by differences. In “Cora Unashamed,” we see how Cora has been discriminated her whole life because of her and her family’s skin color and because she had a child without being married. Cora is discriminated because of the smallest details in her life because the whites don’t see how great she really is.
She is humble, honest, independent, and trustworthy. She has raised her brothers and sisters, she has worked since she was eight, because her dad was an alcoholic and her mother, a house wife that doesn’t know how to do anything else. She has been the one that maintain her house together; she work, she raised her siblings, she is the one that supports their humble house economically. Through the story we see what an incredible person Cora is from the inside, but the people around her only judge her because of her skin color.
In “Cora Unashamed” we meet Jessie; she is like Cora’s second daughter because Cora’s first baby girl dies of whooping cough and Cora adopts Jesse in her heart. Cora nursed Jessie and considered her, her daughter because the Studevants didn’t show much love for Jessie. Mrs. Art Studevant was ashamed of how stupid Jesse seemed and, because Jessie wasn’t like the rest of her siblings. Her mom thought she was dumb and stupid because she hadn’t graduated from high school and she was nineteen years old. But in reality she was more knowledgeable than her mother because she didn’t discriminated others by their physical appearance.
Jesse loved and trusted Cora. She looked up to her. Jesse would always find her way to the kitchen and Cora. Jesse bloomed in the kitchen, she laughed, she talked, she was sometimes even witty, and she learned to cook wonderfully. Jesse trusted Cora more than her own mother, she was always afraid of what her mother would say about her problems, because she knew how prejudice her mother was. Jesse was a total different person when she was around Cora. She was not like her family; she was not racist. But she grew up around a whole group of racist people, primarily her family.
But she also had Cora to teach her the right way. When Cora found out that Jesse was pregnant she understood her, she told her not to be ashamed because the baby was a gift from God. But unfortunately her family didn’t see it that way. They became angry with her, because of her stupid acts. Even though the baby’s father was not black, Jessie’s mom, Mrs. Art, was still racist toward him because he was Greek. Mrs. Art forced Jessie to abort her child. Jesse didn’t want to because she was in love with the baby’s father and she knew he would marry her and take responsibility of the baby.
Mrs. Art Studevants took Jesse to Kansas and made her abort her baby there. A few weeks they came back. Jesse was change, she was no longer the same girl, and she was thinner and paler than she’d ever been in her life. Cora knew there was something wrong with her baby girl, so she went to her room and Jesse told her that she no longer had her baby. Through the story, the reader sees much of discrimination towards Cora and her family and to other people. The Studevants considered themselves as the best and they thought they could rule everyone around them.
But we know that is not right because God made us equal in his eyes. He said we were all his children. Humans have made stereotypes and differences among each other. We think we are going to feel better by putting someone else down, but that is not true because that makes us ignorant people. Humans learned discrimination from other humans, racism has existed our whole lives because ignorant people think that their skin color, language, country of birth, etc, makes them better from others. We are equal human beings in God’s eyes. People are not born racist; racism is learned.