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Native Son

  • Date Submitted: 01/27/2010 11:23 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 60.7 
  • Words: 1124
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      The novel Native Son by Richard Wright is an African American literature that depicts the protagonists’, Bigger Thomas’s struggle in a segregated society during 1930s. Bigger Thomas lives in a one bedroom apartment in the South Side of Chicago. The conflict Bigger faces in this novel is the arrogant and frustrating white society. This tragic novel is associated with racism, fear and humiliation caused by the white force over the black majority. Racism is discrimination or prejudice based on race. It causes a great deal of oppression and hatred in the humanity. Humiliation is the state of being disgraced and shame. It is also wide-spread in the world that we live in. Fear is a feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by the presence or imminence of danger. Bigger Thomas at the age of 20, Bigger finds his first job as a chauffeur for a rich white man, Mr. Dalton. During his first night as a chauffeur, Bigger commits murder, accidentally killing Mr. Dalton’s daughter, Mary Dalton.

In the novel, Richard Wright through the depiction of Bigger’s hatred and discomfort and Bigger’s murder of Mary shows that segregation and oppression will only lead to violence in a society.

One very controversial theme this classic novel is based upon is racism. In 1900s, the black society was afraid of whites. Racism in this novel is depicted in a great deal, for it is the most important aspect of Bigger’s behavior. For example, when Bigger goes to Mr. Dalton’s to be a chauffeur, the author states, “There was an organic conviction in him that this was the way white folks wanted him to be when in their presence; none had ever told him in so many words, but their manner had made them feel that they did.” (47) Bigger is ashamed and humiliated because of a white person’s presence. He constantly begins to think that he has done or said something wrong. All these feelings in a person usually appear, when a person feels he or she is inferior to another person and starts to...


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