Gaines was thirty inthe year in which "The Sky is Gray" was first published, but it was not until five years later, inthat the story was published as the second story in Bloodline, the thematically interwoven collection with which readers associate it today. Written during the most turbulent years of the Civil Rights movement, the stories in Bloodline describe a less turbulent but perhaps even more racially raw period: Louisiana in the late s and early s. Supporting these ideas is Gaines's keen awareness of the all-pervasive and profoundly formative influence of race on virtually every aspect of life in the rural South of this era.
The course focused on southern writers. I had no idea at the time that I would go on to become a scholar of southern literature or to write A Southern Weave of Women: Fiction of the Contemporary South.
All I knew in the fall of was that I loved the literature Martha had us read: The narrator is James, an eight-year-old black boy living in rural Louisiana. The unrelenting cold and hunger he experiences throughout the story stay with me so many years later.
For the sky is, indeed, gray in this story. James and his mother, Octavia, set out for the town near them, take the bus so that the boy can have a tooth pulled. They are headed to Bayonne, a town in Louisiana where they can get services like the dentist but not nearly as large as Baton Rouge, where the boy has also traveled.
Octavia heads the household now that her husband has left to serve in World War II. As they walk the streets of Bayonne, his mother conveys to him — nearly without words — how to act so as to defer to the Jim Crow system and at the same time stand up straight and proudly in the face of it. His mother admonishes him, telling him to wear the coat properly.
Regardless of the scope, however, Gaines forces us to consider the personal in the historical.
The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman will tell you. Here, as elsewhere, Gaines writes about the world he knew intimately from his upbringing. A fifth-generation descendant of plantation slaves, he grew up on the River Lake plantation in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana, where he set most of his fiction.
The Missouri Review offers an insightful interview with Gaines. For more resources, visit the Ernest J. Gaines Center at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. This week, StoryWeb celebrates its th post.
If you enjoy learning about a new story each Monday, please pass the word along to your friends!Ernest J. Gaines This Study Guide consists of approximately 53 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to .
Ernest J. Gaines was thirty in , the year in which “The Sky is Gray” was first published, but it was not until five years later, in , that the story was published as the second story in Bloodline, the thematically interwoven collection with which readers associate it today.
In the short story The Sky is Gray, Ernest J. Gaines shows the struggles, inflicted by poverty, in an eight-year-old boys life. This poor, Negro boy, James, lives with his . Watch and Listen:Listen as Ernest Gaines reads the ending lines from “The Sky Is Gray.” You can also watch a film adaptation of the short story.
Finally, take some time to watch as Ernest Gaines talks about his background and discusses his novel A Lesson Before Dying (part of the National Endowment for the Arts’ program The Big Read). Critical Analysis of the Story The Sky is Gray by Ernest Gaines The title of the story “The Sky is Gray” by Ernest Gaines is ironic.
It suggests at first the bleak mood of the story but also hints at hope in the future. Jul 16, · "The Sky Is Gray" by Ernest Gaines "The Sky Is Gray" is a story narrated by eight year old James which tells the events of a Loved your analysis!