Thursday, February 9, 2012

“She was a poetess of profanity, an oracle of epithets who could outcuss a bathroom wall.”

                The difference in the relationship and personality of the people Conroy came to know in this chapter really stood out to me. The two families that I mainly noticed a comparison and yet such a huge contrast between was the Stone family and the Skimberry family. The Skimberrys consist of a black husband and a white, blond haired wife as well as two children, whereas the Stone’s consist of a white husband, a white wife, and a white son. The Skimberry family lives modestly and gets by on Zeke Skimberry’s janitor salary while the Stone family has the most power on the island and is wealthy because they are in charge of most of the jobs on the island. What struck me about the Skimberrys was their unpretentiousness and acceptance of Conroy into their lives and people in general. In chapter four Conroy writes regarding the Skimberrys, “They instinctively liked all people but had been conditioned to dislike and depreciate blacks.”  Ironically, Zeke Skimberry is black and his children are half black. This seems to be a common theme on the island however, the Stone’s degree of hate, especially Tim’s, extends to violence and genuine hatred and anger towards black people. This hatred and anger towards not just black people but anyone who doesn’t agree with the same ideas as him, is clearly evident when Conroy comes over to watch the news with him, and Stone goes on a rant about the “lice” of the world and how they all need to be dead and rid of. I think that Tim Stone lives on Yamacraw Island because he has the most power there and is in charge of basically everything on the island and is allowed to be in charge without question. 


  1. The Skimberrry's were not a mixed race couple. Had they been a mixed couple, Ida would not have been greatly disturbed at the thought of taking her child to see a "nigger" doctor. The reading also tells us that The couple left their local church, where they were active members, after the church decided to close its doors if a "nigger" every tried to attend services. Had Zeke been a black man, the family would not have been allowed to be member there. I think the phrase you took this from was the one that said "behind his back, people hissed that Zeke was 'Benningtons's nigger' and nothing more". This statement was the white peoples way of slurring Zeke Skimberry by saying he was no better than a "nigger".

  2. Doesn't this quote just help you begin to realize what an amazing writer Conroy is? It makes me want to improve my own writing, lol! I want to put this much personality into my sentences! Good post!