Bell Hooks' "A Revolution of Values: The Promise of Multicultural Change"
“Be not conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewal of your minds.” Romans 12:2. Bell Hooks quotes the bible to explain to her audience that people don’t always have to follow societies perceived notions concerning racism; instead they should think for themselves and construct their own opinions about what is right. Bell Hooks’ essay, “A Revolution of Values: The Promise of Multicultural Change,” speaks about the integrated public school system and it’s effect on society of the later 1950’s and 1960’s. Generally speaking towards African Americans and whites alike, the author apprehensively talks about how she plans on attending her first ever high school reunion. She recounts the friendship that she and a white male had formed during her high school years and how it was deemed unacceptable at the time because she was an African American female. Bell Hooks goes on to in her essay to remember her feelings as an African American in a society that she thought needed a social change to end all racism. She wanted society to move from a segregated culture to cultural diversification. Bell Hooks’ essay is successful because of her strong use of many different sources of expert support, as well as her influential uses of both pathos and ethos to maintain her argument to end racism.
During the time period this essay was written, Dr. Martin Luther King was the one of the most recognizable and influential advocates for civil rights and racial justice. He still holds this title today for many. In Bell Hooks’ essay, she uses King’s works to further prove not only her own belief on ending racism, but Dr. King’s same view as well. Hooks says quoting Dr. King, “That we would be unable to go forward if we did not experience a ‘true revolution of values.’” Hooks uses this and many other of Dr. King’s views to show her audience that society needs to have its priorities in balance in order to progress culturally. She uses this type of support to show that there is no real need for racism and that it inhibits society from living a more passive and mentally healthier way of life. The author quotes King again saying, “If we are to have peace on earth” that “our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation.” Using this technique enables the author to further prove her point. She does not give her audience any other choice but to leave racism in the past and move on in life.
Bell Hooks also uses pathos to reach her audience. She uses her own life experiences to touch her reader on more of an emotional level to get her point across. Hooks’ goes into detail about her life as an African American teenager in a socially fragile world. Hooks hits close to home when she speaks about her best friend, who was a white male. He had asked her to join him and his family for dinner at his home. Hooks says, “After hours of discussion and debate...