Max's Defense in "Native Son" Analytical Essay by academic

Max's Defense in "Native Son"
An analysis of Max's defense of Bigger Thomas in "Native Son" by Richard Wright.
# 45758 | 1,397 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Nov 19, 2003 in Literature (American) , English (Analysis)

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This paper examines the book, "Native Son", by Richard Wright and, in particular, looks at how Boris Max uses his defense of Bigger Thomas to state his own beliefs, as a pulpit as it were. It analyzes how, knowing Bigger is guilty, his own desires and viewpoints come into play and, in effect, it shows how Bigger's trial is not so much about guilt or innocence, but what causes men to behave the way they do and whose responsibility their behavior ultimately becomes.

From the Paper:

"Max uses blindness in his passionate argument to the judge, and this same blindness is a continuing theme throughout the book. Max eloquently tells the judge that if he reacts only to Max's comments about the sufferings of Negroes, he will be "blinded" by feelings that prevent him from understanding reality and acting accordingly. Max pleads, "Rather, I plead with you to see... an existence of men growing out of the soil prepared by the collective but blind will of a hundred million people" (Wright 328), and continues, "Your Honor, in our blindness we have so contrived and ordered the lives of men" (Wright 336). Thus, Max sees blindness in this instance is a threat to the state, along with a threat to men's freedom."

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