Fear And Violence In Bigger Thomas

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Bigger Thomas is intended to be the embodiment of the vicious prejudice cycle seen in America during his time period. His whole life is essentially the constant cycle of hate, but only fit into one lifetime. His raw and animalistic fear at what the whites will do to him if he lashed out then causes him to lash out, and be portrayed as violent, which then causes a torrent of racial divide, and just as peace and understanding are being uncovered, they become cut short by ignorance. His life beings in fear and violence that is repeatedly lashed at him, like a whip, and he eventually uses violence to break the hatred, until he realizes that this flood of pride from breaking the prejudice only causes more violence, and is slowly introduced to the …show more content…
Bigger’s thoughts are initially fairly simple and drawn out, yet he gives us glimpses of his fear and realization of the racial injustice system, but quickly hides them behind thoughts of violence or other relief actions like drinking or playing pool instead of finding a job. As his confusion and anxiety mount, they culminate in the murder of Mary, after which Bigger’s sentences start to sound like realizations. Each explanation of his actions fuels Bigger’s confidence, and we can feel his understanding of the situation around him pulsing underneath his words, wanting to break free. We feel sympathy for Bigger as his feelings, raw emotions of lust and hate, start to connect with the words of Max and help reveal how the complex system of racial injustice has bred someone like Bigger. It is also extremely important to note that ironically, Bigger uses his knowledge of how white people think of him to his advantage. He deliberately twists his speech and manner in order to cater to their racist assumptions, and yet he doesn’t realize that the whole purpose of his murder was a subconscious attempt to break those assumptions. The book is also divided into three sections, Fear, Flight, and Fate, which reveal Bigger’s mental state during each section. The first sections shows how fear has developed Bigger’s internal thought process, and how …show more content…
If one is raised in a society that does not let them think or act for themselves, then what will they think of themselves? Self-hate blossoms into hate of the system, and hate always results in violence. The particular difficulty of breaking the cycle in America was that the people of color always felt fear and shame, from the time they were young. Wright demonstrates with the rat and the naked children watching their parents, that this shame can turn someone into a violent beast, where violence seems like the only fuel for power. Wright also demonstrates how rich the 1930s were for the seeds of fascism, everyone hungry for their taste of power and uprising by having Bigger be slightly jealous of the dictators and their ability to rule these people with total power. These dictators preyed upon that fear and shame of the people they sought to rule over, much like how a semi-crazed Bigger seeks to rule his people and take advantage of them through fear and shame. He also uses it against the white people, capitalizing on their fear of offending Bigger and their shame of having to ask him for help in order to escape from conviction. Wright demonstrates how those two core emotions, so easily inflamed, can lead to a nonstop cycle of reactionary hate and violence that would become American racial

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