In "Coming of Age in Misssippi," how does Moody express doubt that things things may not pave towards true equality?

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sullymonster eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As an autobiographer, Moody makes specific choices about where to begin and end her tale.  Instead of focusing only on her work during the Civil Rights movement, she takes the story back to her childhood.  This choice allows readers to see the change in race relations and the motives that pushed her into action in the movement. 

Similarly, Moody chooses where to end her story.  She could have ended with the March on Washington.  This would have provided a very uplifiting and hopeful mood, giving readers the belief that equality is on its way.  However, Moody goes past the march, elaborating on more horrors, such as the bombing of the church in 1963.  She explains her own doubt in both the methods of CORE and her own commitment to a cause that has put her in danger.  Although she does let readers know she returned to the cause, in her narration, she also expresses her own doubts that the races will be equal.  Consider her last line:  "I wonder.  I really wonder."  The first and last lines of a narration have a huge impact on readers' reaction to it.  She is telling us in her summation that she is doubtful.

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Coming of Age in Mississippi

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