Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Misfits (Part I) by James Howe

This book does an amazing job of redefining "minority." It is about a group of five 12 year olds who are trying to run for student council. They are not part of the "popular" or "in" group but they know they have something to offer and they know that they are not the only ones who can benefit from them being in student council. They represent a lot of different aspects of the school.

I loved this book because it discusses so many different topics and the title "Misfits" brings it all together perfectly. The misfits are seen as people who don't fit into the "norm" and in this book they are represented in a number of different ways, for example; a tall and very smart girl, a very round, chubby boy, and a homosexual boy, to name a few. My favorite part of this book was they way it discussed the minority in a school and how it showed that it is about a lot more than race. When Addie decides that she wants to run for student council she immediately goes looking for someone who is black and who is popular to run as president on her ticket. She does this because she thinks that if anyone knows what it is like to feel like a minority, it has got to be a black student. When DuShawn agrees to run for president he understands why she picked him to run but says "You're more oppressed than Tonni and Royal and me. I mean, we're cool." This part of the story really stuck out to me because this is exactly how it is in school. People aren't really seen as fitting in based on the color of their skin, it is based on whether or not their cool. And what makes them cool is the people they hang out with, what activities they participate in, what their families are like...race doesn't really come into play. I thought this book did an amazing job of pointing out this idea!

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