Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

Alea Bird

1. Understanding the way things are

Cassie learns at the end of the book that not all whites will be nice to blacks. Some ways Cassie learned about prejudice was when the kids walked to school, the Jefferson school bus splashed mud on the kids on purpose. Also, on her first trip to Strawberry, Cassie realized that workers serve white people before black people. During the same trip she learned to never back talk a white girl or else her dad will slap you in the face. Little Man also experienced prejudice when Great Faith got the text books and there was a lower-cased, bad name for African Americans behind the long list of upper-cased whites. Stacy witnessed prejudice when T.J. started hanging around with R.W. and Melvin, then they beat him up. He realized that they were using T.J. to get items (like the gun) that they wanted.

2. theme one

Family matters the most. This is an important theme in the story because the Logan family was always spending time together in Mama and Papa's room or on the porch. When Uncle Hammer came for Christmas, he got Stacy a nice coat and presents for the other kids, which showed he cared about them. Another example is when the kids go anywhere, all of them went together or none of them went at all.

2. theme two

Education should be appreciated. Mama is a teacher so she expected a lot out of her children. The time after they dug the ditch to stop the Jefferson school's bus, Mama had to separate them so they wouldn't look at each other and giggle. Mama also realized that some blacks didn't get any education, so she made sure to give the students good lessons so she knew she was at least giving these kids an education.

2. theme three

It is possible to keep your pride in the face of racism. Cassie represented this theme when she stood up for herself, T.J., and Stacy in Strawberry at Mr. Barnett's mercantile. She told him that he should serve who got there first, not just the whites. During the same Strawberry trip, Cassie had to muster up a lot of strength to finally apologize to Lillian Jean after she accidentally ran into her. Mr. Morrison had to stay calm when Kaleb Wallace pulled over his truck and said Mr. Morrison that he deserved to be hanged. Mr. Morrison kept his cool and moved the truck out of the road and continued to his destination.

3. What this novel reveals about me

This novel reveals that back then blacks got treated worse than anyone ever should. It made me feel very sad to hear about the stories where the whites thought it was ok to make up excuses to get the blacks in trouble. It made me wish that I could have been there to help the black people. Even though I am white, I could never imagine treating another black person bad just because of their skin color. After reading this book I have decided that I will never judge a person by their skin color.