Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

When I Was Growing Up//Wong

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I’m not going to lie. The main reason I was excited about reading this article was it’s length. This article is short, and I was pumped! However, as I read the poem, I realized that there was a lot of depth behind the short length. It was all about white privileges and one young girl’s dream of being white.

At first, I was confused because I did not really understand why she would “long” to be white, but at line 5, I began to understand. I can not imagine living a life where I was being told that I was dark until I believed that even my soul was dark. That hurt me to think that maybe I have done something or acted in some way that might have made others think that even their souls are dark. However, I could start to think that maybe it isn’t so bad to be Chinese when she starts talking about the smart Chinese students, but  then she hit me again.

when I was growing up, I felt
dirty. I thought that god
made white people clean
and no matter how much I bathed,
I could not change, I could not shed
my skin in the gray water.

I cannot begin to think about a world where I want to wash off my skin color to make others like me. I can’t imagine thinking that I was made dirtier than people around me. This article stuck with me and has caused me to think about my actions.


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