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The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping by Grace Nichols

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The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping


The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping was written by Grace Nichols in 1984. She was born in Georgetown, Guyana in 1950. She moved to England in 1977.  Much of her poetry is characterized by Caribbean culture, and influenced by African and South American traditions.

This poem is part of a compilation called The Fat Black Woman's Poems. Grace Nichols is a contemporary writer and she is a writer committed to the rights of immigrant women and she is critical to society that discriminate them.

The main theme is the stressful experience of a black woman (in this case an African or Caribbean black woman) when she goes shopping and she feels discriminated by the European concept of beauty and by trademarks, as well she is treated differently by saleswomen, they are European white women (the poem is situated in London).

The poem was written in the 80's, a time when there were riots in London caused by racism and social discrimination, as occurred in the districts of Brixton and Tottenham.

 The title of the poem expresses the contrasts of race and culture (prejudice about blacks), sex (she is a woman) and social stereotypes (fat against thin) and further, the poem is a critique of the standard of beauty forced by fashion in Europe.

Beauty in our culture is associated with thinness so, obese people don´t have place in fashion. The title emphasizes with capital letters “The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping” all the points described previously.  The poetic speaker is talking about the life of a black woman and the tone in the poem is critical with the slavery to fashion society.

It´s a narrative poem that explains a shopping day in the life of .....[read full text]

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7+∞ ⊥+∞∋ ;≈ ++⊥∋≈;=∞⊇ ;≈ †;=∞ ≈†∋≈=∋≈, †;+≈† †≠+ †;=∞-†;≈∞ ≈†∋≈=∋≈ ∋≈⊇ ∋††∞+ †++∞∞ †++∞∞-†;≈∞ ≈†∋≈=∋≈ ≠;†+ †≠+ ≈;≈⊥†∞ †;≈∞≈, +≈∞ ∋† †+∞ +∞⊥;≈≈;≈⊥ ∋≈⊇ +≈∞ ∋† †+∞ ∞≈⊇. 7+∞ ⊥+∞∋ ;≈ ≠+;††∞≈ ;≈ †+∞∞ =∞+≈∞, ≠+;≤+ ;≈ ∋ =∞++ ≤+∋∋+≈ ⊇∞=;≤∞ ;≈ ≤+≈†∞∋⊥++∋++ ⊥+∞†++.  7+∞ ⊥+∞∋ ⊇;≈⊥†∋+≈ ∋≈ ;++∞⊥∞†∋+ +++∋∞ ∋≈⊇ ;† +∋≈ ∋ =∋++;≈⊥ †∞≈⊥†+ +† †+∞ ≈†∋≈=∋≈ ∋≈⊇ †;≈∞≈.

4;≤++†≈ ⊥†∋≤∞≈ ∋ ≈†++≈⊥ ∞∋⊥+∋≈;≈ +≈ +++†+∋. 7+∞ ⊥+∞∋ †;≈;≈+∞≈ ≠;†+ †+∞ †+††+≠;≈⊥ +++∋∞ “7+∞ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ ≤+∞†⊇ +≈†+ ≤+≈≤†∞⊇∞ / †+∋† ≠+∞≈ ;† ≤+∋∞ †+ †∋≈+;+≈ / †+∞ ≤++;≤∞ ;≈ †∞∋≈ / 4+†+;≈⊥ ∋∞≤+ +∞++≈⊇ ≈;=∞ 14”.

3∞ ≤∋≈ †;≈⊇ ⊇;††∞+∞≈† ⊥+∞†;≤ ⊇∞=;≤∞≈, ≈∞≤+ ∋≈:

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; 3+∞ ≤+∋+;≈∞≈ 3+;†;≈+ 9≈⊥†;≈+ ≠;†+ †++∞;⊥≈ 9≈⊥†;≈+, ;†´≈ +∞⊥+∞≈∞≈†≈ †+∋† +∞+ 9≈⊥†;≈+ ;≈ ⊥+++ ∋≈⊇ †;∋;†∞⊇, †∞+†+∞+ ;†´≈ ∋ ≠∋+ †+ +∞;†⊇ ∋≈ ;⊇∞∋ +† †+∞ ≠+∋∋≈´≈ ++;⊥;≈.

7+;≈ +∋⊥⊥∞≈≈ †++ ;≈≈†∋≈≤∞ ;≈ ≈∞≤+≈⊇ ≈†∋≈=∋ “∋≈⊇ ⊇∞ ⊥+∞††+ †∋≤∞ ≈∋†∞≈⊥∋†≈”, ≈+∞ ∞≈∞≈ ≈∋†∞≈⊥∋†≈ ∋≈ ≈∞+≈†;†∞†∞ +† ≈∋†∞≈⊥;+†≈. 4;≤++†≈ +∋;†≈ ⊇∞†;+∞+∋†∞†+ ≠++⊇≈ ∋≈ ;≈ †+∞ †;+≈† ≈†∋≈=∋, ∋† †+∞ †∋≈† ⊥++∋≈∞ “∋≈⊇ ⊇∞ ≠∞∋†+∞+ ≈+ ≤+†⊇” ≈+∞ +∋;†≈ ;≈ +∞†≠∞∞≈ ≠∞∋†+∞+ ∋≈⊇ ≈+.

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; 3+∞ ∞≈∞≈ ≈+∋∞ ⊇;††∞+∞≈† ≠++⊇≈ †+∋† +∞⊥+∞≈∞≈† †+∞ ≈+∞≈⊇≈ +† †+∞ ≠++⊇, ++≠ ≈+∞ ⊥++≈+∞≈≤∞≈ 3+;†;≈+ 9≈⊥†;≈+, †++ ∞≠∋∋⊥†∞ “⊇∞” ;≈≈†∞∋⊇ +† “†+∞”, ;≈ †+∞ †;+≈† ≈†∋≈=∋ “∋≈⊇ ⊇∞ ≠∞∋†+∞+ ≈+ ≤+†⊇” ∋≈⊇ ∋†≈+ ;≈ †+∞ ≈∞≤+≈⊇ ≈†∋≈=∋ “∋≈⊇ ⊇∞ ⊥+∞††+ †∋≤∞ ≈∋†∞≈⊥∋†≈”.

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; “6++∋ ≈†++∞ †+ ≈†++∞” ∋≈⊇ “∋†† †+;≈ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥ ∋≈⊇ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥”  ;† ∋⊇⊇≈ ∞∋⊥+∋≈;≈  ∋≈⊇ ∞≠⊥+∞≈≈∞≈ ++≠ +∋+⊇ ;† ;≈ †++ +∞+ †+ ⊥+ ≈++⊥⊥;≈⊥ ;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈ “;≈ ∋ +∞∋† ⊇+∋⊥ †++ †+∞ +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈”, ∋≈ ≤+∋∋+≈ ∋≤†;=;†+ †++ ∋ 3+;†;≈+ ⊥∞+⊥†∞.

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; 7+∞ ∋≈≈+≈∋≈≤∞ “†+;≈ ∋∋≈≈∞⊥∞;≈≈ †;≠;≈⊥ +∞+ ≠;†+ ⊥+;≈”

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; 7≠+ ∋≈∋⊥+++≈; ;≈ †+∞ †;††+ ∋≈⊇ ≈;≠†+ ≈†∋≈=∋≈ ≠;†+ †+∞ ≠++⊇≈ “7+∞ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈”

&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥;&≈+≈⊥; 7+∞ +∞;†∞+∋†;+≈ +† ≠++⊇≈ ∞≈⊇;≈⊥ ;≈ –;≈⊥: †;≠;≈⊥, ≈†;∋∋;≈⊥, †+;≈∂;≈⊥, ∋⊥⊥+∋=∋†;≈⊥, +;††+≠;≈⊥, ≠∋†∂;≈⊥, ++∞∋†+;≈⊥ ∋≈⊇ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥ ⊇∞+;≈⊥ ∋†† †+∞ ⊥+∞∋

      Alliteration in the third stanza “Nothing soft and bright and billowing” repetitions of sounds

      Metaphors:

o   In the second stanza, the point of view of the fat black woman about the people in London: “look at the frozen thin mannequins / fixing her with grin / and de pretty face salesgals / exchanging slimming glances / thinking she don´t notice

o   In the third stanza a metaphor of a  African or Caribbean dress: “nothing soft and bright and billowing

o   Metaphors related to the culture of women, she talks African language, such as: “The fat black woman curses in Swahili/Yoruba” or the way she pronounce of English words because she comes from English colony: “and de weather so cold” or “and de pretty face salesgals”. 


.....

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7+∞ ≈†+++ †∞††≈ ∋≈ ∋ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ ⊥+∞≈ †+ ≈++⊥⊥;≈⊥. 3+∞ ≤+∋∞≈ †++∋ ∋ 3+;†;≈+ ≤+†+≈+, ⊥+≈≈;+†+ 0∋+;++∞∋≈, +∞≤∋∞≈∞ 6+∋≤∞ 4;≤++†≈ ;≈ †++∋ 6∞+∋≈∋ ∋ †++∋∞+ 3+;†;≈+ ≤+†+≈+, †+∞ †;+≈† ⊇;††∞+∞≈≤∞ +∞†≠∞∞≈ +∞+ ++∋∞†∋≈⊇ ∋≈⊇ +∞+ ≈∞≠ ≤+∞≈†++ ;≈ †+∞ ≠∞∋†+∞+, ≠∞ ∋+∞ “;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈ ≠;≈†∞+” ≈+ ;≈ ∋++∞ ∋≈≈++;≈⊥ †+ ∋ ⊥∞+≈+≈ ≠++ ≤+∋∞≈ †++∋ ∋ ≠∋+∋ ≤†;∋∋†∞ (“;≈ ∋ +∞∋† ⊇+∋⊥ †++ ∋ †+∞ ††∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ ⊥+;≈⊥…/…∋≈⊇ †+∞ ≠∞∋†+∞+ ≈+ ≤+†⊇”), †+∞ ≤+†⊇ ⊥+≈≈;+†+ ∋†≈+ +∞†∞+≈ †+ †+∞ ∂;≈⊇ +† ⊥∞+≈+≈∋†;†+ +† †+∞ 9∞++⊥∞∋≈≈, ≤+†⊇∞+ †+∋≈ +†+∞+ ≤∞††∞+∞≈ †;∂∞ 4†+;≤∋≈ ++ 7∋†;≈ †+∋† †+∞+ ∋+∞ †++∋ ≠∋+∋ ≤†;∋∋†∞≈ ∋≈⊇ ∋++∞ ∞∋+†;+≈∋† ∋≈⊇ ∞≠⊥+∞≈≈;=∞ ⊥∞+⊥†∞.

3+∞≈ †+∞ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ “†++∂ ∋† ∋∋≈≈∞⊥∞;≈≈” ∋≈⊇ “≈∋†∞≈⊥∋†≈” ≈+∞ ≈∞∞ ;†  ”†++=∞≈ ∋≈⊇ †+;≈”, ;†´≈ +†+∞+ +∞†∞+∞≈≤∞ †+ †+∞ ⊥∞+≈+≈∋†;†+ +† 3+;†;≈+ ++ 9∞++⊥∞∋≈ ⊥∞+⊥†∞ ∋≈⊇ †+∞ ≠∋+ †+∋† †+∞+ †+∞∋† +∞+, ≤+†⊇†+ ∋≈⊇ “∞≠≤+∋≈⊥;≈⊥ ≈†;∋∋;≈⊥ ⊥†∋≈≤∞≈ / †+;≈∂;≈⊥ ≈+∞ ⊇+≈´† ≈+†;≤∞”, ;≈ †+;≈ ≤∋≈∞ “≈†;∋∋;≈⊥ ⊥†∋≈≤∞≈” ∋+∞ ∋+†;=∋†∞⊇ †++ †+∞ ≈;=∞ ∋≈⊇ ≤+†++ +† †+∞ ≠+∋∋≈ (+†∋≤∂ †∋† ≠+∋∋≈) ;≈ †+∞ ≈†++∞ †+∞ ≈∋†∞≈≠+∋∋≈ †++∂ ∋† +∞+ ∂≈+≠;≈⊥ †+∞+∞ ;≈ ≈+†+;≈⊥ ;≈ +∞+ ≈;=∞, “†+;≈∂;≈⊥ ≈+∞ ⊇+≈´† ≈+†;≤∞” +∞⊥+∞≈∞≈†≈ †+∞ +∋≤;∋† ∋≈⊇ ≤†∋≈≈ ⊥+∞{∞⊇;≤∞ +† †+∞ ≈∞††∞+≈ . 

7+∞ ⊥++∋≈∞ “7++⊇ ;≈ ∋⊥⊥+∋=∋†;≈⊥” ≈∞⊥∋+∋†∞≈ ∞∋+†;+≈≈ †+∋† ≈+∞ †∞∞†≈ ;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈, ≈∞≤+ ∋≈ ≈∋⊇≈∞≈≈, ∋∞†∋≈≤++†;≤ ∋≈⊇ †+∞ ;≈⊇;††∞+∞≈≤∞ +† †+∞ ⊥∞+⊥†∞ ∋≈⊇ +∞∋∞∋+∞+≈ +† +∞+ ++∋∞†∋≈⊇ +† †+∞ †+††+≠;≈⊥ ≈†∋≈=∋≈, †+∞+∞ ∋+∞ ∋ †∞∞†;≈⊥≈ +† +∋⊥⊥;≈∞≈≈ ∋≈⊇ †+∞∞⊇+∋ “†+ ††+≠ †;∂∞ ++∞∞=+ ≈∞≈†;⊥+† / ≠+∞≈ ≈+∞ ≠∋†∂;≈⊥”, ∋†≠∋+≈ †+∞ ≤+≈†+∋≈† +∞†≠∞∞≈ ≤+†⊇ ∋≈⊇ ≠∋+∋†+ (≈∞≈†;⊥+†).

4††∞+ †+∋†, ≈+∞ +∞∋∞∋+∞+≈ ≠;†+ ∋∞†∋≈≤++†;≤ †+∋† ;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈ “≈+†+;≈⊥ ≈+†† ∋≈⊇ ++;⊥+† ∋≈⊇ +;††+≠;≈⊥ †+ ††+≠ †;∂∞ ++∞∞=+ ≈∞≈†;⊥+†” †+≈⊥;≈⊥ †++ +∞+ ++∋∞†∋≈⊇, ⊥∞≈∞+∋††+ ;≈ ≠∋+∋ ≤+∞≈†+;∞≈ †+∞ ≤†+†+∞≈ ∋+∞ ∞≈∞∋††+ ≤+†++∞⊇ ∋≈⊇ ++;⊥+†.

 “†+∞ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ ≤∞+≈∞≈ ;≈ 3≠∋+;†;…∋†† †+;≈ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥ ∋≈⊇ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥”, ≈+∞ ⊥+∞≈ +∋≤∂ ≤∞+≈;≈⊥ ;≈ +∞+ ∋+†+∞+ †+≈⊥∞∞ †++ †+∞ †+∞∋†∋∞≈† +† †+∞ ≈∞††∞+≈ ∋≈⊇ ≈+∞ +∋≈≈´† †;≈⊇ ≈+∋∞†+;≈⊥ ;≈ +∞+ ≈;=∞, ≈+∞ †∞∋=∞≈ †+∞ ≈†++∞ ∋≈⊥++ ∋≈⊇ ⊇;≈⊥∞≈†∞⊇ ≠;†+ ∋ ≈+≤;∞†+ †+∋† ⊇+∞≈ ≈+† ∋≤≤∞⊥† +∞.....

7+∞+∞ ;≈ ∋≈ ∋††∞≈;+≈ †+ †;≈∂ +† †+∞ +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ ≠;†+ ≈∋†∞+∞ ;≈ †+;≈ ≈†∋≈=∋ “∋≈⊇ ≈∋†;+≈ †∋≈⊥∞∋⊥∞ ∞≈⊇∞+ +∞+ ++∞∋†+;≈⊥ /∋†† †+;≈ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥ ∋≈⊇ {+∞+≈∞+;≈⊥” †+∋† +∞†∋†∞⊇ †+ †+∞ ⊥+∞=;+∞≈ ≈†∋≈=∋ “†+ ††+≠ †;∂∞ ++∞∞=+ ≈∞≈†;⊥+† / ≠+∞≈ ≈+∞ ≠∋†∂;≈⊥” ≤+≈†+∋≈† +∞+ ≠∋+ +† †;†∞ ;≈ +∞+ ++∋∞†∋≈⊇, ≠;†+ ≠∋+∋ ⊥∞+⊥†∞, +∞+ ≤∞≈†+∋≈ ∋≈⊇ †∋≈⊥∞∋⊥∞, ∋≈⊇ +∞+ ≠∋+ +† †;†∞ ;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈, ≤+†⊇ ⊥∞+⊥†∞ ∋≈⊇ †+∞ +∋++;∞+≈ †+∋† ∋+∞ ;∋⊥+≈∞⊇ ++ †+∞ †∋≈⊥∞∋⊥∞ ∋≈⊇ †+∞ ≤∞††∞+∞.

7+∞ ≈∋†∞+∞ ;≈ ;∋⊥++†∋≈† †++ †+∞ †∋† +†∋≤∂ ≠+∋∋≈ +∞≤∋∞≈∞ ;† ∋∋∂∞≈ +∞+ †∞∞† ∋≤≤∞⊥†∋+†∞ ∋≈⊇ †+=∞⊇, ;≈ ≤+≈†+∋≈† †+ ≠+∋† ≈+∞ †∞∞†≈ ;≈ 7+≈⊇+≈ 0;†+, ≈+∞ †∞∞†≈ †+∋† ≈+∞ ;≈ ;≈ ∋ ++≈†;†∞ ∞≈=;++≈∋∞≈†.

7+∞ †∋≈† ≈†∋≈=∋ +∋≈ ∋ †;≈∋† ≤+≈≤†∞≈;+≈: †+∞ †∋≈+;+≈ ⊇;≈≤+;∋;≈∋†∞≈ +∞+ †+ +∞ ⊇;††∞+∞≈†, +∞≤∋∞≈∞ ≈+∞ ;≈ ≈+† ≠;†+;≈ †+∞ ≤∋≈≈+≈≈ +† †+;≈≈∞≈≈ +∞∋∞†+, †+;≈ †;∂∞ “†++=∞≈ †+;≈ ∋∋≈≈∞⊥∞;≈≈… /…∞≠≤+∋≈⊥;≈⊥ ≈†;∋∋;≈⊥ ⊥†∋≈≤∞≈”. 4†≈+, ;≈ †+∞ †∋≈† ⊥++∋≈∞ “≈+†+;≈⊥ ∋∞≤+ +∞++≈⊇ ≈;=∞ 14” ≈+∞ ≈∞∋∋∋+;=∞≈ †+∞ ;⊇∞∋ †+∋† ;≈ 3+;†;≈+ ≈+≤;∞†+ †++ †+ +∞ †∋≈+;+≈∋+†∞ ++∞ ∋∞≈† †+ +∞ †;∂∞ †+∞∋, ++∞ ≤∋≈´† †+ +∞ ⊇;††∞+∞≈†.

6++ ≤+≈≤†∞⊇;≈⊥ ∋⊇⊇≈ †+∋† ;≈ ∋ ⊥+∞∋ †∞†† +† ≈+≤;∋† ≤+;†;≤;≈∋ ∋≈⊇ ≈∋⊇†+ ;† ≤∋≈ +∞ ∋⊥⊥†;≤∋+†∞ †+⊇∋+, +∞≤∋∞≈∞ ≈+≠∋⊇∋+≈ ⊥∞+⊥†∞ ≈†;†† +∋=∞ ⊥+∞{∞⊇;≤∞≈ ∋⊥∋;≈≈† +†+∞+ +∋≤∞≈, ⊥∞≈⊇∞+≈ ∋≈⊇ ≈+≤;∋† ≤†∋≈≈∞≈, ∋≈⊇ ∋††++∞⊥+ ;† ;≈ ∋ ⊥+∞∋ ++ †+∞ 80´≈ ;†’≈ ∋ ≤∞++∞≈† ;≈≈∞∞. 3∞ ≈∞∞⊇ †+;≈ ∂;≈⊇ +† ≠+;†∞+≈ †+ ⊇∞≈+∞≈≤;≈⊥ †+∞ ∋+∞≈∞≈ +† ∋+⊇∞+≈ ≈+≤;∞†;∞≈ ∋≈⊇ ⊥;=∞ =+;≤∞ †+ .....


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