Similar to the first two texts that we have read this text is responding to giving people the write to be able to write in their own voice. That people shouldn’t have to feel as if they have to give up who they are and what they have known themselves for in order to be “accepted,” in society. This text not only touched up on this reoccurring issue but also police gun violence against minorities (specifically Black individuals) Later on within this text it mentions the death of Reggie Jordan the 22-year old brother of Willie Jordan and how even with the help of students, putting fundraisers, etc Reggie’s death was not justified.
The author of this text is June Jordan an African American minority who is writing on the struggles and difficulties of being part of the minority group. The struggles mentioned within this text include being told to talk properly and being not only racially profiled by cops but also having to deal with violence from the police.
I would say that this is an essay/academic article since at the beginning of the text the people in Stony Brook had asked permission and thanked June for giving access to her essay. I feel like knowing the type of genre that this text falls into helps discover the overall complexity ad appearance of the argument since with this being a personal essay as well as being used as an academic article we can get a a more personal feeling with the emotions and intentions of this text. With this being officially published by State University of New York otherwise known as Stony Brook we can get a feel of this essay being structured “academically.”
I would say that the intended audience for this piece of writing include Minorities (specifically African Americans, the police department, Students/Staff of Stony Brook, Academic organizations, etc…) From the text it can be clearly said that June Jordan is a professor teaching students which means I can make the assumption that she is teaching an audience of the same beliefs (Social Beliefs not religion) I say this because throughout the text as she is describing what it is like to teach her class about “Black English,” as well as the death of “Reggie Jordan,” it would seem that the class agrees with her and is supportive on what she believes/is teaching the class.
The author is trying to inform and educate her audience. The reason to why I say this is for one she is a teacher and is teaching her class about “Black English,” and informing them about the death of Reggie Jordan due to police violence.
Well first and foremost the main argument that she is trying to portray in the beginning of her writing is that people should have the right to be able to feel free to write and create pieces of writing with the use of their own voice (having the ability to accept themselves and feel welcomed in society in doing so) The second argument that June Jordan is trying to portray within her essay is police brutality against minorities specifically African Americans which was the cause of Reggie Jordans death as mentioned towards the of her essay.
For the first argument this is supported through logical explanations such as how people are expected to talk and speak a certain way in order to be accepted or to fit in. One example of this within the text is when June gave an example of Black English to her class and they all started judging it for being “improper,” English that it was hard to understand or didn’t make sense. For the second argument (being police brutality against minorities) the example used was the death of Reggie Jordan by police. June and her class tried whatever they could to bring justice for Reggie but without any success.
One thing in this text that stands out to me as a rhetorical reader that the author is able to relate to her audience and talks about current issues through not only her own knowledge but also through experience. She also uses real life examples on Police Brutality with the case of Reggie Jordan.
As with the previous texts that we have read I would say that the one thing that I would want to remember about this text is that you should not be afraid to express yourself for who your are and you shouldn’t fear using your own voice in pieces of writing or speeches. Proper English isn’t achieved by learning “American,” English but rather through coming with the acceptance and comfort of your own voice.