Essay on Analysis Of The Central Purpose Of Octavia Butler 's Kindred

2276 Words Mar 11th, 2015 10 Pages
The central purpose of Octavia Butler 's Kindred is the idea of feeling and remembering history while recognizing the roots. Time travelling helps to achieve this purpose by allowing the readers to go back to the "source" of present day racial issues through Dana. Dana, the main character, learns what is like to be black during slave times, where she is provoked by Rufus 's father who views her as a threat since she is a free slave. As she time travels, Dana discovers that reality is reliant upon physical circumstances. Before going to the past, Dana believed that she would never be a slave, but the physical circumstances she encounters as she visits the past changes her view. She finds herself willing to compromise to avoid the violence and humiliation she suffers.

"Rufus came out to play hero for providing such a good meal, and the people gave him the praise he wanted. Then they made gross jokes about him behind his back. Strangely, they seemed to like him, hold him in contempt, and fear him all at the same time. This confused me because I felt about the same mixture of emotions for him myself," in this instance, Dana realizes that her attitude toward Rufus was no different from the slaves as she previously thought it was. Through this instance, she was able to feel and understand the reality of slavery that her ancestors had to go through in the past. She learns that she must comprise some of her freedom and adapt to a new time by playing the obedient slave. Slavery…

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