The external and internal conflicts are very evident in Wright’s story Black boy. When the boy’s father left, his internal problem of hunger became closely associated with his father. After the boy started doing household chores such as cleaning and shopping, that gave way to another internal problem, responsibility. The boy was not yet ready for such a responsibility; he had to grow up fast in too short a period.
On the boy’s first trip to the supermarket, he came across an angry mob of boys. The boys beat him and stole his money. They did this a second time, and each time the boy’s fear of the gang became increasingly evident. His external conflict with this gang became more and more of a problem. When finally the boy stood up for himself, he solved several problems, his hunger, and the fear of the boys.
The external problem of his father leaving and the fear of the gang, closely coexist with the internal problem of the boy’s hunger. The gang is in the way of the boy getting the groceries, and boy would have never had the problem of being hungry had his father not left. Overall, the boy’s conflicts revolve around his father. Even though the father is not there, the boy grows stronger in the end because of it. For when he stood up for himself, that day, he learned a valuable lesson.