Racism in Native Son

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Racism in “Native Son” “Native Son”, by Richard Wright, is a heart-rending representation of the racial oppression that invaded Chicago as well as the rest of America during the 1930s. Through the experiences of his black character Bigger Thomas, Wright provides helpful understandings about the origins of racial segregation and the tragic ways in which it affected American society. Throughout the story, Wright insists that Bigger was not born a violent criminal. He is a “native son”. A native son is a product of the violence and racism that suffused the devastating social conditions in which he was raised. By no means does Wright downplay the oppression of blacks by whites, but he does demonstrate that much of the racial inequality was due to the profound lack of understanding, among both blacks and whites, of the other social group. Bigger’s misunderstanding of whites binds him to a self-fulfilling insight, because as he behaves according to what he believes is his racial destiny. An important quote that can describe the racism in the story as well as the racism during that time is when Wright writes, "We live here and they live there. We black and they white." This shows how there is a “colored line” and how racism divides the “white” and the “black”. In “Native Son”, racism is unavoidable. Bigger is painfully aware that he is socially handicapped by his black skin, and expresses his frustrations when he says, “Every time I think about it I feel like somebody’s poking a red-hot iron down my throat. Goddammit, look! We live here and they live there. We black and they white. They got things and we ain’t. They do things and we can’t It’s just like living in jail” (20). Bigger and his friends know that policemen never search carefully for blacks that commit crimes against other blacks, yet they terrorize and publicly shame blacks that
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