Essay about Analysis Of The Novel ' Our Nig '

Essay about Analysis Of The Novel ' Our Nig '

Length: 933 words (2.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Wilson shares the story of Frado as she navigates life as the black-sheep of the North in the mid-1800s. The pseudo-autobiographical novel Our Nig holds strong parallels to the how the modern world views relate to race relations. In the 1800s, the North portrayed itself as the haven for the Blacks much like the “post-racism’ America portrays itself today. The hypocrisies of these portrayals reveal themselves as one explores the themes of identity and its implications.
The characters in the novel hold themselves to deterministic labels that dramatically dictate their actions, attitudes, and subsequently their identity. For some characters, these identities morph them into symbolic beings. The novel starts with the story of Frado’s mother Mag. Frado’s mother resides in the disgraceful, impoverish class initially, but plummets to the unredeemable, bottommost rung of the social scale when she marries Jim, a black man. However, before Jim she had another unnamed lover of a higher social class. “She thought she could ascend to him and become an equal. She surrendered to him a priceless gem” (Wilson 5). Mag’s desire to break free of her underprivileged status drives her to relinquish her virtue, by first accepting her primary lover, then later marrying Jim, and then abandon Frado. The inclusion of Frado’s lineage plays a strong role in setting the context of Our Nig. It serves to establish the social structure of the time. In the 1800s, the North holds an unspoken, economic hierarchy; except for in Mrs. Bellmont’s case who exclaims her objections to Jack’s poor wife. “Poverty was to her a disgrace, and she could not associate with any thus dishonored.” (Wilson 63). These labels rarely change greatly, but for matters of the race no mobil...

... middle of paper ...

... world’s beats down on Blacks less physically in the modern-day, except for the police brutally incidents, but still the constant psychological, institutionalized oppression persist to poison the so call Land of Liberty.
Wilson’s novel shows first the cause and effect of a Land that allows or has allowed slavery. The same ideologies used to keep people enslaved carries on in the wake of the institution of slavery. American attempts to moves passed and forget its dark history like Mr. Bellmont, but the shadow of slavery and oppression still looms over those that hold ties to an enslaved legacy. That identity as less than human and less deserving carries with the younger generations who never experience to blow of the lash. The shadow will never lift until the average person takes it upon themselves to look inward and see how their inaction only spreads more inaction.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Sketches from the Life of a Free Black, In a Two-Story White House, North

- For my final analysis paper I choose the novel "Our Nig...." or "Sketches from the Life of a free Black, In A Two-Story White House, North". To begin there is an on going debate of wether the book should be classified as a novel or a autobiographical narrative. At first I sided with the reading being a novel, but after reading the short history of Harriet Wilson I am crossed as to what she intended the book to be. I ultimately concluded it was written as a novel which Wilson drew from her own life experiences to tell the story of a young mulatto girl named Frado....   [tags: final analysis paper]

Better Essays
1062 words (3 pages)

Frado in Harriet E. Wilson's, Our Nig Essay examples

- Frado in Harriet E. Wilson's, Our Nig In Harriet E. Wilson’s only known work, Our Nig; Or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black, I read about a young black girl who grows up as an indentured servant to a large Bellmont family. In the readings I read, the young girl has three names: Alfrado, Frado and Nig. In this essay, I’ll refer to her as Frado. Although Our Nig is an actual fictitious novel, our literature book only gives us three chapters. Each of these small chapters tells us a great story....   [tags: Harriet E. Wilson Our Nig Racism Essays]

Better Essays
784 words (2.2 pages)

Harriet Wilson 's Our Nig Is Significant Because It Was The First Novel Published By An African American Woman

- Faith Burns AAS 261W Take Home Quiz 1. Harriet Wilson’s Our Nig is significant because it was the first novel published by an African American woman. Our Nig is also an autobiographical work and reveals life realities of free black people in the north. 2. The defining moment in Our Nig is when Frado challenges Mrs.Bellmont, who has been physically and mentally abusing her. Frado says she will no longer work for Mrs.Bellmont if Mrs. Bellmont whips her again; Mrs.Bellmont decreases the frequency of her beatings....   [tags: Black people, African American, White people]

Better Essays
1167 words (3.3 pages)

Analysis Of The Novel ' Villette ' By Charlotte Bronte Essay

- In the novel Villette, by Charlotte Bronte, Lucy Snow comes in contact with a multitude of characters who are not always new to her throughout her story in Villette. Often times they are character who the reader was already introduced to earlier in the novel and she simply does not always make that connection, for reasons that vary with each character. On a superficial level, misrecognition is used to build suspense in the novel, but on a deeper level misrecognition and recognition is a tool used to allow Lucy to open up to the readers and other characters more than she had in the past....   [tags: Fiction, Novel, The Reader, Charlotte Brontë]

Better Essays
870 words (2.5 pages)

Edna Novel Analysis Essay

- Edna’s will to break out of the confinement of her family vs. Mr. Pontellier’s determinedness to keep Edna In Edna’s quest for independence and control over herself, Mr. Pontellier and his family pose the immediate threat to Edna, who associates family with mental confinement. At first, Mr. Pontellier confines Edna’s will and asserts his dominance by reproaching his wife, that “if it was not a mother’s place to look after children, whose on earth was it?” (178). While Edna initially adheres to Mr....   [tags: Suicide, Suicide methods, Sociology, Novel]

Better Essays
887 words (2.5 pages)

Essay on Harriet E. Wilson 's Our Nig

- Harriet E. Wilson is an African American woman who based her story, Our Nig, on her own personal accounts during her enslavement. Our Nig is a unique story because it gives another perspective of different forms of slavery (i.e., Northern indentured servants) and sheds light on the hardships faced by female indentured servants. However, there are many other reasons why Our Nig is distinctive, including its compelling story, its analyses that give a detailed breakdown, its interesting language of the period, and ability to produce a reaction from oneself....   [tags: Slavery, Indentured servant, Indenture]

Better Essays
953 words (2.7 pages)

A Look At The Story Our Nig Essay

- Harriet E. Wilson’s novel Our Nig; or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black, In A Two-Story House, North. Showing that Slavery’s Shadows Fall Even There. follows the life of Frado, a young mulatto girl in the household of a white family residing in New England. She is abandoned to this family at the age of six because her mother could not afford to care for her and resented her and the hardships to which her birth had contributed. The mistress of the household to which Frado is left is a cruel and spiteful woman, especially towards blacks....   [tags: Harriet Wilson]

Free Essays
1509 words (4.3 pages)

Analysis Of The Novel ' Manju Speaks Of The Idea Of Independence ' Essay

- The novel explores the women who want to assert their right and create their own identity in the traditional society. The novel not only describes India 's independence-partition time but also independence of women from conventional and patriarchal bondages. Sunita Sinha rightly states in Discovery of Daring and Desire in Manju Kapur’s Fiction, “Kapur speaks of the idea of independence – independence aspired to and obtained by a nation and also independence yearned after by a woman” (Sinha 161)....   [tags: Family, Sociology, Patriarchy, Novel]

Better Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Suffering in Harriet Wilson's Our Nig Essay

- Harriet Wilson’s Our Nig is a novel that presents the harshness of racial prejudice during the 19th century combined with the traumas of abandonment. The story of Frado, a once free-spirited mulatto girl abandoned by her white mother, unfolds as she develops into a woman. She is faced with all the abuse and torment that Mrs. Belmont, the antagonist, could subject her to. Still she survives to obtain her freedom. Through the events and the accounts of Frado’s life the reader is left with a painful reality of the lives of indentured servants....   [tags: essays research papers]

Better Essays
1178 words (3.4 pages)

Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now: A Comparative Analysis of Novel and Film

- Heart of Darkness and Apocalypse Now: A Comparative Analysis of Novel and Film In the opening scenes of the documentary film "Hearts of Darkness-A Filmmaker's Apocalypse," Eleanor Coppola describes her husband Francis's film, "Apocalypse Now," as being "loosely based" on Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness. Indeed, "loosely" is the word; the period, setting, and circumstances of the film are totally different from those of the novella. The question, therefore, is whether any of Conrad's classic story of savagery and madness is extant in its cinematic reworking....   [tags: Compare Contrast Novel Film]

Free Essays
1461 words (4.2 pages)