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Grace Johnson


Inthe 19th century, many cities in the United States grew at atremendous rate because of the escalating increase in population aswell. Moreover, the expansion of industries in the 19th century alsocontributed largely to a rise in population. The immigrants that alsocame to the United States from other parts of the world contributedto the Increase in population. Consequently, the majority of peoplethat lived in the rural areas migrated to the cities leading to theexpansion and growth of many cities during the 19th century. The manycities during that cropped up during the 19th-century result in thepromotion of a special bond and connection among people, laying thefoundation of multiculturalism and multiethnic society. The 20thcentury is the progressive era in the history of the United States(Vest,2011).The century opened up with surprising discoveries and innovationssuch as the Wright brothers’ first flight and theory of relativityfrom Einstein. The First World War however came and dominated the20th century, a feat that resulted in the death of many Americansoldiers. The 20th century marked a great milestone in the musicindustry with the advent of the American popular music culture widelyknown as pop music. In the 1910s, my era as Glen Jonson, the narratorthere was a wave of jazz music all across America

Asan eight-year-old and an only child to Susan and Gary Johnson, I amdescribable as the beautiful happy girl that is ever smiling. I hailfrom a happy family evidently brought out by the fact that my parentshave been married for well over 19 years now. Most people have oftentaunted that I bring along with a semblance of responsibility fromhow I carry and portray myself with decorum and proper mannerisms.Having originally been born in New Jersey, my parents moved to OakPark Chicago, an upper-class settlement area on the outskirts of thecity. Over the years, I have been nothing short of remarkable in myacademic life (Ragin,2010).I have managed to set high standards for my friends and otherchildren in the neighborhood, and I like to think of it that way.

Eversince I was a toddler, I have always been an art enthusiast. However, when asked what I would be by most people around meespecially my father, I often see myself following the art educationpath as am a good instructor and teacher to my peers, thus, it wouldsuit me perfectly well if I become an art teacher. Growing up, I havealways seen my teachers especially art teachers as influentialcharacters in helping nature my artistic personality and prowess.Consequently, I feel indebted to do the same and nurture otherdeveloping artistic talents.

The1910s are a more of a revolutionary period with which its legacy willbe important for the socio-cultural development of the civilizedcountries. This epoch brought about many changes to the society butone being the birth of the affluent society. During this period isalso when the music band, the Five Celtics produced one of their mostglorified albums, The Revolver, my dad’s favorite. I distinctlyremember the opening song in this album was the ‘Taxman’ byGeorge Harrison, which received much criticism from the government.This is because it is probably the only song containing overt censureof the government. In this song, Harrison finds it typical that muchof their earnings go to taxes. He further argues that this should notbe the case as he is the taxman and the government is working for noone else but the taxman. Even though this criticism was moderated, tosome it seems to be politically directed to the government.

Asa young girl, I clearly and categorically report on the demand forthe attention of the underclass and underprivileged life of Americansliving in the inner city outside Oak Park, Chicago in the housingprojects under dilapidated conditions. As a young girl I remember onhow various social workers would ingeniously manage to engage a highlevel of trust between them and the subjects that granted them theopportunity of witnessing every kind of private moment, a blackextremist groups planning attacks, a teenage mother with her newbornand an officer roughing up one of the suspects. The amount of timethey spent around their subjects was what enabled them to earn thehigh levels of intimacy with each other.

Inthe early 1910s and being a young girl in my formative years, I hadbeen exploring the typically known stereotypes of the ghetto and wenton ahead to dispel some of the myths held dearly by its inhabitantsas it is told from the ordinary folks and the black organizedcriminal groups of Chicago. I fondly remember the story of Tyreeka, a14-year-old teenager, who gets pregnant in a desperate move to keep astraying boyfriend and not to obtain government handouts, as mostpeople will presumably think. Additionally, I used to focus the lifeof DeAndre, an upcoming civil rights leader and black extremists, wholove his work in a shoe-cleaning stall (Frommer,2012).He becomes so proud when he lands his first job at Wendy’s that heparades his uniform in front of his mother and girlfriend. However,the job soon does not generate DeAndre the much-needed money forcinghim to indulge in criminal activities often wreaking havoc in thewhite neighborhoods around Oak Park.

Theholidays are my favorite time of the year, and I look up to them asit is the one time of the year when everyone in my family meets uptogether to wine and dine. I have fond memories of the holidays andmore so about the family traditions. The fact that people cometogether and enjoy each other’s company and food in abundance makefor the most memorable parts of my holiday season. Moreover, the snowevokes the Christmas spirit every young member of the Johnson family.Our family usually converges at our New Jersey home or mygrandparents’ house. Over the Christmas period, me and the otherfamily members usually binge-watch the Christmas plays at the localtheater throughout the entire festive season as part of theirlong-lived family tradition. I pretty much enjoy the watching thegame repeatedly because of the theme of love. Eating biscuits andchocolate pudding on Christmas morning is also part of theirtradition, something that started when my dad was a toddler. My momand some of my aunt by Christmas morning are usually busy preparingthe family meal.

OneChristmas that will never forget was six years ago whenthey woke on the morning of 26th only to find six and a half inchesof snow had filled the ground. Moreover, the weather was so windythat it had blown the snow all around the fence to the level offorming snow banks. The banks were deep to the extent that they hadto make tunnels around the yard, something that felt surreal to GraceJohnson. The other Christmas memory that young is fondof is when her mother’s side of the family decided to have areunion in Michigan. The gathering was so huge that they all had torent a nine-bedroom house. During that Christmas, they had theprivilege of watching home videos on a projector screen for hours onend. will forever live to cherish those moments.

Beingan avid fan of plays and books, I often have a hard time choosing myfavorite books and plays. However, narrowing it down to one pick onthe play side, I would easily settle for the Princess Bride, which Ienjoyed the witty banter between the characters and the plot twistsin the movie altogether. However, the movie is more or less a cliché,but a funny one at that and I like it because of the cheesy lovestory between the protagonists. On the other hand, my favorite bookwould be The Help, which she liked because of its narrative depth anddecorated and colored pictures.

Despitenot having lived for long or lived to see much of the historicalevents unfold, I have three news events that changed the course ofhow I viewed life. One of the news events that got the better of mewas the race riots all over the city of Chicago. I witnessed the raceriots sparked by the defeat of a white boxer by a black boxer in aheavyweight match, a traumatizing event to an 8-year-old. Inreality, blacks underwent all sorts of mistreatment ranging frompaternalistic and mild to sadistic and cruel (Simon,et al. 2011).Wives, husbands, and children had to separate from one anotherthrough organized auctions and had to endure an unusual whipping. TheSupreme Court made the ruling that slaves were a subhuman propertythat had no rights whatsoever. The case presented by a liberal manwho was once a slave that had worked to gain his liberation and oursfrom our owners for many years. Subsequently, slaves had no legalchannels of protesting the mistreatment they went through. As a younggirl at the time living in Chicago, I lived in fear of openrebellion, but this was a rare phenomenon. However, it was common forslaves to feign illnesses, sabotage farm properties, organizego-slows and sometimes go to the extent of committing murder or arson

Ihave over the years gotten to feel differently about myself and viewslife from a more reasonable and realistic perspective. However, stillfeel that I could improve my attitude and my handling of certainsituations.


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Simon,David, and Burns, Edward.&nbspTheCorner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood.New York: Broadway Books, 2011. Print.

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