“He must be “good” not only in order to please his parents and not only to be punished by them; behind their authority stands another, nameless and impersonal, infinitely harder to please, and bottomlessly cruel”

The first part of this sentence makes me happy because this is what most kids are raised like. This is mood because this is what I felt when reading this it is also because i felt tense when reading this. The word “good” made me feel happy because it is in quotations and it makes me feel like it means something more than good. I think the “good” means to be like that group of people. This is why I think the critical race theory intra-racial racism. This is similar to it. This theory means hate to a group of people that you don’t like or is different. Black people have to be white in order to be accepted.

The second part of the sentence is more intense because Baldwin used hyperbole as shown when he used the word infinitely. This literary device, hyperbole, the definition is exaggeration for effect. Hyperbole emphasizes the speaker’s point. When Baldwin used the word infinitely, it brings the quote on a whole new level. Also, the word cruel brings infinitely even more noticeable. This second part of the quote means that there are people that are hard to please, using “infinitely” means that it is impossible to please the people. Using the word cruel, it brings impossible to please people to impossible to please the people that hate you very much that they would hurt you.


CC BY-SA 4.0 Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time: Please the Racist Cruel People by Zhuo Xuan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


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