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Word Count: 934
Sympathy in Wrights Native Son In Native Son Richard Wright introduces Bigger Thomas a liar and a thief Wright evokes sympathy for this man despite the fact that he commits two murders Through the reactions of others to his actions and through his own reactions to what he has done the author creates compassion in the reader towards Bigger to help convey the desperate state of Black Americans in the 1930s The simplest method Wright uses to produce sympathy is the portrayal of the hatred and intolerance shown toward Thomas as a black criminal This first occurs when Bigger is immediately suspected as being involved in Mary Daltons disappearance Mr Britten suspects that Bigger is guilty and only ceases his attacks when Bigger casts enough suspicion on Jan to convince Mr Dalton Britten explains To me a niggers a nigger Wright Richard Native Son New York Harper and Row 1940 154 Because of Biggers blackness it is immediately assumed that he is responsible in some capacity This assumption causes the reader to sympathize with Bigger While only a kidnapping or possible murder are being investigated once Bigger is fingered as the culprit the newspapers say the incident is possibly a sex crime 228 Eleven pages later Wright depicts bold black headlines proclaiming a rapist 239 on the loose Wright evokes compassion for Bigger knowing that he is this time unjustly accused The reader is greatly moved when Chicagos citizens direct all their racial hatred directly at Bigger The shouts Kill him Lynch him That black sonofabitch Kill that black ape 253 immediately after his capture encourage a concern for Biggers well-being Wright intends for the reader to extend this fear for the safety of Bigger toward the entire black community The readers sympathy is further encouraged when the reader remembers that all this hatred has been spurred by an accident While Bigger Thomas does many evil things the immorality of his role
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