scroll to top
Stuck on your essay?
Get ideas from this essay and see how your work stacks up
Word Count: 1,217
The novella Benito Cereno has been a topic of controversy amongst several critics In their perspectives some differ and others coincide on themes in Benito Cereno The theme that we are concerned with is if violence even if it was for a worthy cause was justified in Benito Cereno Violence as depicted by these analysts was used as a median to control slaves and alternate subordination in the story Several critics such as Joseph Schiffman Charles Swann Eric Sundquist and Kermit Vanderbilt assert this issue This paper will analyze these most relevant critics and their positions on this theme in the story One of the pro-justification critics for instance Schiffman justifies the violence by justifying Babos position He quotes Williams to assert his own position Williams says Babo after all as perhaps his name suggests is just an animal a mutinous baboon32 Schiffman then contradicting Williams states his position by saying Though he was mutinous as Williams says he was no baboon32 Coming to show that Babos malignity was not motiveless Schiffman builds on Melvilles understanding for mens desire for freedom to portray Babo the leader of the slave rebellion in the fight for freedom and all Babos violent acts of cruelty to be sincerely dictated by his purpose the worthy cause freedom and stability He plotted the murder of Alexandro Aranda because he and his companions could not otherwise be sure of their liberty30 Schiffman clearly depicts that even through the rebellious violence Babo emerges the moral victor in Benito Cereno34 According to Schiffman Babos evil actions are justified through his desire for freedom Schiffman explains this by stating Babo is evil because of an evil world justifying his violent actions due to his environment Sundquist contradicting Schiffman builds upon the revelation of Babos true design as his disguise of dutiful slave falls away to reveal a countenance lividly vindictive 146 thereby believing the violence is not justified Sundquist emphasizes the vicious
@Kibin is a lifesaver for my essay right now!!
- Sandra Slivka, student @ UC Berkeley
Wow, this is the best essay help I've ever received!
- Camvu Pham, student @ U of M
If I'd known about @Kibin in college, I would have gotten much more sleep
- Jen Soust, alumni @ UCLA