Jitney, Act Two

Study Guide:

Time: The Next Day

Act Two, Scene One (61-83)

  • How is Wilson setting up the approaching catharsis by having Doub and Turnbo hold forth about Lena Horne and Sarah Vaughn
  • Look at Turnbo's speech about women, money and violence. (63) Why are most men destined for violence?
  • When Youngblood finds out that the shop is being closed down, he blames the 'white man' for another injustice. What advice does Doub give him about getting along in the white man's world? What point is he trying to make about his experience as a gravedigger in Korea? (64-66) Whose philosophy does this advice reflect?
  • When Rena and Youngblood finally have it out, what obstacles must they overcome in order to reconcile? What doubts are creeping into Rena's mind? What frustrations haunt Youngblood? What kind of heavy lifting must these two young people do in order to make their relationship work? How does this episode relate to Wilson's overall theme in the play? (72-77)  (VIDEO: "Maybe I Did Do It All Wrong")
  • What advice does Becker give the young couple when he finds out that they have bought a house? (77-79) (VIDEO: "All You Got Is Each Other") 
  • Describe the two dreams about life that Fielding and Booster have lost. Why does Wilson juxtapose the two? (80-83)

Act Two, Scene Two (84-87

Act Two Scene Three and Four (88-96)
  • Unpack the political meaning of the play's conclusion. How does Becker's death relate to Wilson's point? What will happen to the jitney drivers?
  • What about Booster's response and the play’s final moment?