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Throughout the story, I can sense the mother’s hope that her daughter will have the life she hasn’t had. At first, it’s not clear why she wants her daughter to have a better life other than the fact that the girl is her daughter and mothers always want what’s best for their children.

The story takes place during the 1950s or 1960s. The Civil Rights Movement is happening, and African Americans have gained the opportunity to go to school with white students. This change explains why the mother did not get an education, but her daughter will be able to get one. The mother is taking a leap of faith, hoping that her daughter will succeed in ways that she had not been able to.

‘This form. Would you mind helping me fill it out?’ The woman still seems not to understand. ‘I can’t read it. I don’t know how to read or write, and I’m asking you to help me.’

When the mother asks the woman, whom she did not know, if she will help her fill out the form because she can’t read, the reader can sense the embarrassment that the mother feels. “‘I see,’ my mother says, looking about the room.” I feel like the mother whispers because she is embarrassed. The mother doesn’t want people to know that she can’t read or write, maybe because she thinks they will think less of her daughter.

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