Bigger's Self Realization in Native Son Essay example

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Bigger's Self Realization in Native Son

Although today we live in a nation, which has abolished

slavery, the gap between the whites and the blacks during the early stages of

America's development has plainly carried into the present. In Native Son,

author Richard Wright illustrates this racial gap, in addition to demonstrating

how white oppression upon blacks is capable of producing revengeful individuals,

not to mention being an immoral act in itself. Bigger Thomas is one of those

individuals, who discovers his capacity to rebel through acts of murder against

the white society, which has for long oppressed his family, friends, and himself.

By tracing Bigger's psyche from before the
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Book three of the novel offers an emotional confusion within the mind of

Bigger, which soon leads him to contrive a self-realization. Immediately one

observes that "toward no one in the world did he (Bigger) feel any fear

now"(254). This is a recent change in Bigger's mind set. He knows that he has

pushed himself to the limits, and he is in control of what he says and does. He

tries firmly to "stifle all feeling in him[self]"(262) when talking to his

visitors in the jail, because he feared that they "would make him feel

remorseful"(262). In this manner, he is able to not confuse his thoughts with

any feelings, so he can sort out his ideas. This is the self-isolating process,

which occurs mentally, and this enables Bigger to formulate a justification for

his sins. "Men do not like to feel that they are guilty of wrong, and if you

make them feel guilt, they will try desperately to justify it on any

grounds"(360), which is precisely what Bigger is attempting through mental

detachment. Bigger "didn't know I (he) was really alive in this world

until"(392) he killed Mary Dalton. Bigger realizes that he committed the

murders in order to establish his existence in this world.

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