If Beale Street Could Talk Questions and Answers
by James Baldwin

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How does Tish see the world? How does her perspective of the world change at the end of the novel?

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Throughout If Beale Street Could Talk, Tish remains one of the only positive characters. While many others buckle under the pressure and come to the belief that Fonny's trial will go horribly, Tish maintains her optimism. That being said, Tish's viewpoint of the world certainly changes by the novel's end. Much of her optimism comes from a general trusting nature. She depends on her loved ones to help her through her predicament, and, eventually, she depends on the wealthy white lawyer when nobody else around her seems to.

Her faith and optimism are tested relentlessly by her and Fonny's situation. At one point, Fonny's mother claims Tish is a vile seductress that is entirely to blame for Fonny's imprisonment. This causes a dramatic confrontation between the two families, forcing Tish to question the moral character of Fonny's mother. After understanding the difficulties that Fonny faces primarily because of his race, Tish begins to become aware that there are many people who cannot be...

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