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A Critical Perspective Richard Wrights Native Son Richard Wright marked the beginning of a new era in black fiction He was one of the first American writers of his time to confront his readers with the effects of racism Wright had a way of telling his reader about his own life through his writing He is best known for his novel Native Son which is deeply rooted in his personal life and the times in which he lived This paper will discuss this outstanding American writer his highly acclaimed novel Native Son and how his life influenced his writing Richard Nathaniel Wright was born on September 4 1908 in Roxie Mississippi His father was a sharecropper and his mother a schoolteacher In search for better employment his father moved the family to Memphis Tennessee While in Memphis his father worked as a night porter in a hotel and his mother worked as a cook for a Caucasian family Shortly after their move to Memphis Wrights father deserted his family His mother then tried to find any work she could find to support her family Then at the age of seven his mother became ill and was unable to financially support her family As a result the family had to move to Jackson Mississippi to live with relatives Wright remained in Jackson until 1925 Walker 13 In 1925 Wright left Jackson and headed as far as his money could take him and that was Memphis Tennessee Memphis was the exact same city in which his father had taken his family to find a better life and where he abandoned them Wrights first trip to Memphis ended in disappointment desertion and deprivation While there Wright found work as a messenger for an optical company He lived in Memphis for approximately two years During that time he witnessed the deep and violent South which eventually would permanently scar him for life Margaret Walker wrote
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