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Barack Obama's Dreams from my father: Chapter 5

chapter summary
by

Mickey Watson

on 17 August 2013

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Transcript of Barack Obama's Dreams from my father: Chapter 5

Dreams from my Father Chapter 5;
Barack's Awakening

Emptiness
His Father
The role of luck
He began to see how faiths were beginning to play themselves out
- Between color and money
-Between tough or simple times, the final landing is when you fall.
Loneliness
"can't stop the sound of emptiness." (96)
Barack knew that no matter how much alcohol or drugs he took, it will not stop the sound of emptiness
In this case, Barack's emptiness is making him uncomfortable and feeling like he does not fit in.
College
He was accepted into Occidental College in Los Angeles.
Frank, Obama's friend, had called college, "An advanced degree in compromise.
-Tells Barack to keep his eyes open in college.
"What's the trick? The trick is not caring that it hurts."
He says he's learned to not care and which is what his last years of high school had been about.
Black Students and Compromise at Occidental College

At school all the black students stuck together like a tribe
The other students in the "tribe" were tired of thinking about race, but Barack kept thinking.
Fear
Barack begins to understand what Joyce believes in.
- Joyce believes that it is the black people that make their choice between races (African, French & etc).
Distance
Barack feels the need to convince himself that he is not "compromised" as Frank would call it.
- "An advanced degree in compromise." (97)
Mistaken for a Sellout
He began to choose his friends wisely
surrounded himself around politically active black students
And surrounded himself around different races and groups (foreign students, chicanos, feminists, & poets)
Regina
Sophmore year in colleg
e
Barack undergos a political transformation
Gets inolved in the divestment campaign
- contacted representatives to speak on campus
- sent letters to the faculty
- printed flyers
Barack envies Regina's past
-Memories of her childhood
She also had a missing father like Barack
-She told stories of the nights she spent with her uncles, cousins, & grandparents.
Barack's Speech
Let the people know there was a struggle going on that is causing people to choose sides
- choose between: character, servitude, fairness, injustice, commitment, indifferene, right & wrong
Politics
This campaign was the transformaton to baracks politic career
This where he began to get into politics
He began to transform into his political career.
He contacted representatives to speak on campus
He sent letters to the faculty and printed flyers
Divestment Campaign
Barack's Speech
His strategy was to demonstrate to people his opinion
- The strategy was to tell people about the struggle that was going on
- The struggle was about the people having to choose between: character, servitude, fairness, injustice, commitment, indifference, and between right & wrong
After his Speech
In the middle of his speech, someone grabs him off the stage
-However, he had plenty more to say
-He began to think it was all kind of like a joke
He begins to feel sorry for himself
And tells Regina that he isn't going to speak for black people anymore.
The public began to call Regina naive for seeing Barack as a man who believed in something and cared
"You're the one who seems to think he can run away from himself . You're the one who ho thinks he can avoid what he feels."(108)
Regina told him that the campaign is not about him or his ego getting hurt, it's about the people and their needs.
- During this time Barack did not listening to Regina
- He drank beer and focused on himself and how he didn't get to say everything he wanted to.
His Other Friend Marcus began to reminisce about old parties he and Barack had in hotels and how old hispanic ladies use to complain about the messes they left behind.
Regina tells Barack how that could have been her grandmother because she cleaned up after people most of her life.
"Look at yourself before you pass judgement."(110)
Barack began to realize he heard the same thing thousands of times before but in different forms
- He heard them from books, media, and family
Realizes he became so wrapped up in his own perceived lies & he was so eager to escape the image the white authority has set for him
Barack found himself sitting on a doorstep, chills running on the back of his neck
- Says he got it from fear
-the same fear he had about not belonging
Realized Regina was right about Barack and how he made everything about him and his fear as well needs
Realized he needed determination
Full transcript