• Bemoan (verb)
    -to express deep grief or distress over

Taken from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s “You In America”

“You knew by people’s reactions that you were abnormal—the way the nasty ones were too nasty and the nice ones too nice. The old white women who muttered and glared at him, the black men who shook their heads at you, the black women whose pitiful eyes bemoaned your lack of self-esteem, your self-loathing.”

When the protagonist started being in relationship with the “white man”, people’s reaction towards them wasn’t really accepted with open arms. Their relationship was criticize with even just how strangers look at them. Black women for instance feels bad and sympathetic towards the protagonist because they think she is only in relationship with a white man because of her lack of self esteem. Bemoan/bemoaned was on this context to describe this feeling of those Black women. Knowing the meaning of the word made me understand how judgmental they are for thinking this way.


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