Coming of Age in Mississippi

by Anne Moody
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What experiences in Anne Moody's life made her skeptical about change in the fight against racism?

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Essentially, Anne recognizes that there is a resistance to change in Southern society, and perhaps, all over America that makes her wonder if racism is not embedded that it cannot be removed.  Some of her experiences make her wonder about achieving this change in her life.  One such moment is when she comes to learn about the children have been killed in a church in Birmingham.  In its mere mention, this causes a great deal of skepticism as to what she does should continue.  The fact that children are being killed in a house of worship helps to bring Anne to a point of questioning in the nature of nonviolence and change, in general.  Additionally, the assassination of President Kennedy was seen as a pivotal moment when the goals of the movement on a national level was put back.  I think that Anne also comes to a revelation that, on a local level, the good people who sacrificed for the movement are not experiencing any of what they should deserve.  People in Anne's fight, soldiers alongside her, experience physical and emotional torment.  Women are harassed almost daily.  Chinn is now on a chain- gang and white resistance has been effective in bringing her to a point where questioning is justified.  The conclusion she reaches at the end of the narrative is one that reflects the level and magnitude of embedded White racism in American society.

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