Ruth from ”The Color of Water

By April 15, 2019 Education

Ruth from ”The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to his Mother” by James McBride and the Grandmother from ”The Color of Love” by Danzy Senna are different in many several ways. Ruth is a Jewish immigrant, who chose an unorthodox life and succeeds in it; unlike the angry grandmother interaction with the housemaid Mary, causes the granddaughter to assert her true feelings. According, to the book of ”The Color of Water” Ruth McBride’s states that ”I was born an orthodox Jew on April 1, 1921, April Fool’s Day in Poland” (McBride 1). Ruth was suffocating strictness and follow rules od orthodox Judaism. Additionally, Ruth always stresses a lot on the importance of work, God, especially education to her children as well. In the story of ”The Color of Love,” the granddaughter informs grandmother that ”This is about respect-treating other human beings with respect” (Senna 3). The granddaughter expressed her feelings and strictly told her grandmother that she would not tolerate her talking to Mary like that while also reminded her of the abolishment slavery. Ruth married a black man and the grandmother married a young lawyer. In ”The Color of Water” book Ruth informs McBride that ”My Family mourned me when I married your Father” (McBride 2). She was dead to her family when she married a black man named Andrew D. McBride. As a matter of facts, marrying Andrew changed her life and converted from Judaism to Christianity. Furthermore, Ruth was blessed with eight children with her first husband Andrew, who died from lung cancer. Suddenly, she remarried to Jordan Hunter and had four kids with him. In spite of facts, the grandmother has one child and three black grandchildren. The grandmother deeply felt racism in her heart because of her grandchild’s races. As a result, Ruth and Grandmother have their own different significant life changes, that can be positive and negative effects at the same time.
The relationship between the Grandmother and Granddaughter from ”The Color of Love” have few similar approaches with the relationship between the Mother and Son from ”The Color of Water”. In the same way, both relationships between each other are complicated because of races and love. In the story of ”The Color Of Love” the granddaughter states that ” I longed to know her- to love her. But the differences between us were real and alive, and they threatened to squelch our fragile connection” (Senna 2). The granddaughter believes the same racial group cannot be discriminated against each other. For example, the grandmother and Mary belong to the same races because both white; therefore, no possible racial prejudice can occur. In some cases, this problem has become the source of their relationships. Particularly, Ruth was the only white woman living in black neighborhoods during the black power movement. In that case, McBride was afraid to be part of the black movement because he felt that they were going to hurt his mother. In addition, he witnesses the discriminating and harsh treatment of black people in his family and the neighborhood. Lastly, both relationships want to understand the present and future by understanding the past. McBride also that “As a boy, I never knew where my mother was from–where she was born, who her parents were. When I asked she’d say, ‘God made me’. When I asked if she was white, she’d say, ‘I’m light-skinned’ and change the subject” (McBride 21). Ruth and James struggled to strike a compromise between past and present. James and Ruth wish to pay their respect to the past, and perhaps learn from them; however, eventually, they want to move on and find their own, new way of living that is not controlled by the heritage of early family life. Although the granddaughter seems to spend her life trying to understand about her past and seek acceptance from her grandmother, she also seems to be seeking her own self-acceptance.

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