Native Son by Richard Wright Essay

1591 Words 7 Pages
Native Son by Richard Wright Who is the victim in a prejudiced civilization? The dominant group or the minority? "Native Son," a novel by Richard Wright, focuses on the effects of racism on the oppressors and the oppressed. It establishes that in an ethnically prejudiced society discrimination comes from everywhere, and most monumental occurrences only contribute to its decline. The story is set in Chicago in the 1930s. The …show more content…
The plan falls through after Bigger starts a fight with one of the guys who comes late. "Bigger was afraid of robbing a white man and he knew that Gus was afraid, too… He hated Gus because he knew that Gus was afraid, as even he was; and he feared Gus because he felt that Gus would consent and then he would be compelled to go through with the robbery" (25). Bigger hates his race and wishes he could escape the oppression. He isn't proud of being black and sees it as an impediment and a burden. These views of his own race allow him to pilfer from them with no remorse. He and his friends clandestinely envy the freedom that white people experience. He longs to enjoy their privileges but doesn't know how to release himself of the racial boundaries: ‘"Them white boys sure can fly," Gus said. "Yeah," bigger said wistfully. "They get a chance to do everything."… "I could fly a plane if I had a chance," Bigger said. "If you wasn't black and if you had some money and if they'd let you go to aviation school, you could fly a plane," Gus said' (16-17). Racism has curtailed Bigger's ambitions in life and his perception of himself. He is ashamed of his family's penury and he hides his feelings. He has crafted a façade of toughness to guard himself from the pressure he feels because of his family's social position and his inability to help

More about Native Son by Richard Wright Essay

Open Document