Last Updated on August 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 439
"Do you feel like you have anything to atone for?" I asked.
"Not a damn thing, as far as I'm concerned," he said. "We were taking care of our children." (10)
Green interviews Robert E. Taylor, whose family is very close to her family in Farmville, Virginia. Taylor is in his late 80s, and he played a vital role in opening the white private school, Prince Edward Academy, which Green, her parents, and her siblings attended. Even many years later, Taylor defends his actions and justifies what he did by stating that his children needed a place to go to school. His answer does not take into account what happened to the black children in the county, who were left without a school for five years when the public schools were closed. Whites went to the private academy, but blacks did not have a school during that time. Taylor, and many whites in the county, have not been fully honest about their actions and have not spoken of them in any depth. The author digs more deeply into the story and finds out the effects that the closure of the public schools had on black students and families.
I feel torn between my love for my grandparents and embarrassed by their prejudices. I want to be loyal to them and protective of their legacy. Yet I believe this story is worth exploring. My discomfort, and others' discomfort, is all the evidence I need. (30)
The author has always loved her grandparents, Papa and Mimi. They were very supportive of her growing up, and she has fond memories of them from childhood. However, she later finds out that they played a role in establishing the private white academy that allowed the county to go...
(The entire section contains 439 words.)
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