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MonkeyNotes-The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers
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Here, we get a full sense of Dr. Copelandís theories of how to better the condition of people in general and African Americans in particular. He combines a clear sense of Marxism and a clear sense of the special kind of economic and social oppression African Americans suffer. He quotes Marxís central dictum "From each according to his abilities and to each according to his needs." He explains the concept of labor value, the idea that the product contains the history of the work that produced it, but that the owner takes that value instead of distributing it among the workers who produced it. He also explains the special place of African Americans under capitalism and urges the people to withstand their ill-treatment with dignity until one day when they would be relieved of the burden. His speech at his Christmas party seems to have been well heard by the people, but instead of responding with a call to action, they respond with the language of their religion, calling on him to give them the way to salvation.

The new generation of African-American dissidents seems to be much like the old. The voices of dissent are isolated and few. The isolation seems to have damaged their sense of humanity just has it has Dr. Copelandís. The representative of this younger generation dissident is Lancy Davis, who proposes the uplifting of African Americans by their revenge against European Americans. Dr. Copelandís revelation of Lancyís early adolescent trauma of trying to emasculate himself adds to the sense of the dissident as hysterical or insane.


This chapter sets up the foreshadowing of what has happened to Willie. The reader waits for the news from Willie with the same foreboding that Portia waits for it, sure that something terrible has happened to him at the hands of the white prison guards.

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