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The day Native Son appeared, American culture was changed forever…it made impossible a repetition of old lies. -Irving Howe.

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Presentation on theme: "The day Native Son appeared, American culture was changed forever…it made impossible a repetition of old lies. -Irving Howe."— Presentation transcript:

1 The day Native Son appeared, American culture was changed forever…it made impossible a repetition of old lies. -Irving Howe

2 Of course I had an unhappy childhood. The happy childhood is hardly worth your while.

3 Wright background Born Mississippi 1908 Father leaves Abusive mother, grandmother, whites Valedictorian of Middle school Drops out after 8th grade Moves North Life in Natchez, Mississippi

4 Wright background (contd) Dead end jobs –Janitor –Post office Federal Writers project Communist Party Expatriate Wrote Uncle Toms Children - Popular success

5 Goals for Native Son Published in 1940 Book of the Month Club 3 weeks sold 215,000 Based on a story of a real man New version published 1993 To write a book so hard and so deep that white America will have to face it w/out the consolation of tears.

6 On Bigger Thomas Anti-hero Shows society its savagery Searches for a desire to live –Despite a hostile environment –Despite white rejection of ever effort toward self realization

7 Wrights Philosophy All Native Sons victims of white caste ideology WHITE Black Exist in HATE, SHAME and FEAR Treated as less than human - escape into excess

8 Escapes Into Excess Excess of : Violence Sex Drugs/alcohol Religion Black persons condition in America traced directly to treatment by whites


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