Native Son by Richard Wright

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One in three black males will go to prison in their lifetime. (Knafo) This should be surprising and heartbreaking. From the beginning of the new world until now, the essence of the black male in society has been so misunderstood. Black men are often seen as symbols of bad people so usually they have no choice but to do bad things or they are wrongfully convicted of doing bad things. Richard Wright was one of the first black writers to capture the true social construct of black men in his novel called Native Son. Wright tells the story of what it meant to be black in Chicago in the 1930’s, through the main character Bigger Thomas. Moreover, he displays the meaning of being a black male in society. There are many powerful themes throughout the novel but one of most significant is the way white America is much like a prison to the mind and body, for black people. Bigger Thomas, alike many black males today, was a prisoner to society and eventually an actually prisoner. America has been built on a horrifying inevitability for black men; that they will always be expected to be criminals or engage criminal acts even if they are innocent. Richard Wright’s Native Son displays remarkable support of the prisoner theme that went on in the 1930’s, that also continues to go on today and that can reach an end if blacks continue to educate and support our men. Bigger Thomas’ life quickly changes the moment he steps into Mr. Dalton’s home to work for his family. From the start of the novel, Bigger Thomas has a lot of pressure on him. He lives with his mother, younger sister and younger brother, leaving Bigger the man of the house. His mother constantly nags him to take the job as Mr. Dalton’s chauffer for his daughter, Mary Dalton. Mr. Dalton... ... middle of paper ... Since Jan 2012: 16 Since Trayvon - Hip-Hop and Politics." HipHop and Politics. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 May 2014. "The Innocence Project - Know the Cases: Browse Profiles:Thomas McGowan." The Innocence Project - Know the Cases: Browse Profiles:Thomas McGowan. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 May 2014. Jefferson, Cord. "Commentary: Half of All Innocents in Jail Are Black." Black Entertainment Television, 21 May 2012. Web. 06 May 2014. "My Brother's Keeper." The White House. The White House, n.d. Web. 06 May 2014. Nsehe, Mfonobong. "The Black Billionaires 2014." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 04 Mar. 2014. Web. 06 May 2014. Knafo, Saki. "1 In 3 Black Males Will Go To Prison In Their Lifetime, Report Warns." The Huffington Post., 04 Oct. 2013. Web. 05 May 2014. Wright, Richard. Native Son. New York, London: Harper & Brothers, 1940.
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