Wednesday, March 21, 2007
How would you characterize the role of whites in the novel?
The main cause of suffering in the novel is racism. Racism segregates not only the blacks from the whites, but also individual blacks from their society. The novel, by only introducing one white character throughout the story represents how extremely blacks are alienated from whites. The book even shows the alienating effect segregation has in the black community itself. Guitar is an example of an individual who alienates himself from his own society. He adopts radical views resulting from his hatred for whites and the actions they take. Guitar seems to follow a similar path to Malcom X, who takes a radical position against all whites as a whole, disregarding whether they are innocent or guilty of racism. Although Guitar has no previous experience of direct racism against him as Malcom X did, he still represents Malcom X in the story, a radical direct-actionist. They both believe that to win the struggle, direct measures must be taken against all whites, and blacks must join together against white America.