Tools Of Transculturation

by Christina
(MA, USA)

Original Text: Tools Of Transculturatio


When looking at the many ways that the tools of transculturation can be used in a story there is one that stands out in the Charles Chesnutt’s “The Goophered Grapevine.” The term transculturation means it is a transformation of one culture through the injection of elements from another culture.” I feel as though this is true in the story. When Uncle Julius goes and tells the potential buyers of the goophered grapevine. Since he is African-American he is going back in time by telling the different myths and stories that have been passed down from generation to generation. This is feel is a very important element of the story as well. He is trying to tell them the myth to try to get the potential buyers not the buy the house because he still wants to be able to control the land as well. He has learned what being able to have control over the land and running the orchard was like and he was afraid that it was going to fail or he was going to be kicked off of it which he did not want to happen. He did not want to let the whites have control over him again. So he goes back to different myths that have been passed down from generation to generation to try to scare the whites away from the land. It eventually does not work and they do end up buying the land but they don’t kick him off of it they let him help them with the vineyard. So all the people are happy and he does not lose his home but he does lose complete control over it but can’t really complain about then letting him live there still. So in conclusion I feel as though the tool of transculturation used is that one the he uses myths that we don’t really get in the white culture to try to steer people away from buying the land in which he does not want to give up.

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Revised Text:

The term "transculturation" is "... a transformation of one culture through the injection of elements from another culture.” When looking at the many ways that the tools of transculturation can be used in a story, there is one that stands out in the Charles Chesnutt’s “The Goophered Grapevine.”

I feel as though this is true in Chesnutt’s story when Uncle Julius tells the potential buyers about the goophered grapevine. He is African-American and is going back in time by telling the different myths and stories that have been passed down from generation to generation. This is a very important element of the story. He was trying to tell them the myths to persuade the potential buyers to not buy the house because he still wanted to control the land.

He had learned what having control over the land and running the orchard was like and he was afraid that it was going to fail, or that he was going to be kicked off of it, which he did not want to happen. He did not want to let the whites have control over him again. He went back to myths that had been passed down from generation to generation to try to scare the whites away from the land. It eventually did not work and they did end up buying the land but they dinn’t kick him off of it. They let him help with the vineyard.

All the people were happy and he did not lose his home, but he did lose complete control over it. He couldn’t really complain when they let him still live there. In conclusion, the tool of transculturation was his use of myths, that we do not know in the white culture, to try steering people away from buying the land that he did not want to give up.

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