The story "The Baddest Dog in Harlem" was written by the American author Walter Dean Myers. The story's focal point is the police shooting in Harlem that killed an innocent young boy and a dog.
Thus, the story's theme is police brutality, gun violence along with friendship and racism. This analysis will focus on the story's setting, characterization, the text's tone of voice, and the message theme.
The narrator of the story is an unarmed character who tells the story in the first person, seen on page 17, l. 28: "Hey man, we sitting ducks here on this rail," Wilie Said.
"And I am sitting here on the end"." You are lucky," I said. Here the narrator uses 'I' instead of a name. So first, we can see that the author has written his story in the first person;
secondly, it tells us, the reader's, of her own experience with these issues, and lastly, it tells the story of a life in Harlem City.
The language used in the story is affected by slang and the input of grammatical errors on purpose, seen on page 16, on line 23, "Ali would have eat him up".
To highlight the environment, we are in, the writer wants us, the readers, to know that the main characters are poor and that the story is in a ghetto.
Furthermore, this tells us that they might not have gone to school and are not employed and do not have much money. This knowledge clarifies even further that the short novel takes place in Harlem city.
As for the tone and voice, the characters' language is vernacular and mundane and a bit lyrical and poetic as it creates images in our heads.