Blindness in native son

Length: 4 Pages 912 Words

In Richard Wright’s novel Native Son, the characters of Ma Thomas, Britten and Mary Dalton are blind to their surroundings. Ma Thomas does not want to admit her son performed an action that caused a tragedy for the Dalton family. For example, during a visit to Bigger in jail, Ma sees Mrs. Dalton and emotionally states: “‘Please, Mam … don’t let ‘em kill my boy! He ain’t never had a chance! He’s just a poor boy!’” (348). Ma is aware that her son is more than likely going to be sentenced to death because he murdered a white young lady, and later denied it by saying it was another man he had left her with. Ma becomes selfish when she approaches Mrs. Dalton pleading for her son not to be sentenced to death. Ma does not take into consideration all the heartbreak Bigger has put upon the Dalton family. In addition, Ma confronts Bigger and tells him to pray to God: “‘your poor old Ma wants you to promise her… When ain’t nobody ‘round you, when you alone, get on your knees and tell God everything. Ask him to guide you… son promise me you’ll go to him,’” (345). Ma wants nothing to happen to her son. Being blind to the emotions of others, Ma thinks that Bigger is the only person who is being affected. Continue...


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It is not good to be blind, because it ends up hurting you in the long run. The Thomas family has had its share of hardships and this is just another obstacle they need to overcome. The failure to recognize surrounding events and feelings of others can cause harm to many. Britten is blind when he thinks that Bigger is not trustworthy because of the color of his skin. For example, Mary tells her parents that she is going to go to a meeting at the local University, but defies her parents by really meeting up with a communist boy: "Mary to Bigger 'You're not a tattle-tale, are you...I'm not really going to the University...I'm going to meet a friend of mine...' (73). Once they left the house, Mary told Bigger what was really going to happen, and felt she trusted Bigger would not tell her parents what had really happened. "If the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch (Matthew 15:14). Dalton's command of driving her to and from the University. Mary tries to become friends with Bigger because he is black. In Ma's opinion, even if Bigger were to be sentenced to death, if he has turned to God, a part of his soul would be saved. She forgets that the Dalton's are the ones who lost a daughter because of Bigger's action. He is hoping to catch Bigger in his trap with the answers that Peggy is providing. Ma also feels that if her son were to turn to God, everything will be okay. She wants to get more involved with the blacks, that is why she goes to their restaurants to experience their lives first hand. In addition, when Bigger is driving Mary and Jan around and Mary wants to eat, she says to Bigger: "'where can we get a good mean on the South Side ... Look Bigger.

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