Brutus Jones's The Emperor Jones

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The past affects people in many ways. This has always been the case. Human beings must always look upon the past to either fix it or ignore it. If the past is ignored, then it is bound to repeat itself. There are some instances where the past can be a positive thing, and it can cause him or her to learn from it. This idea holds fast in “The Emperor Jones.” The main character, Brutus Jones, faces some tough circumstances. Those circumstances, either cause him to look back on his personal and societal history, and/or they are caused by his personal and societal history. In this short story, Brutus Jones has usurped the position of Emperor. He is undeserving of this title. He is a runaway convict that can easily weasel himself in a position…show more content…
With every hallucination, Jones wastes a bullet. The reader learns in Act I of the play that Jones has created a myth that he can only be killed by a silver bullet, and the silver bullet is lucky to him. So with every bullet he wastes, he gets closer to having to use his final bullet- the silver one. Many of the hallucinations were of Jones’ personal past, not his societal history, or the past. However, there is a major part of the play where he hallucinates that he is a slave that is being sold. When Jones realizes what is happening, he is immediately offended and takes matters into his own hands. His reaction to the situation that he is put in is to shoot the auctioneer; therefore, wasting yet another precious bullet. In the end, Jones wastes every bullet, even his lucky silver bullet. Because he was a liar, cheater, and scammer, the people that he deceived to gain the title of Emperor created a coup. Because of Jones’ personal and societal history, he ends up dead. The meaning of the play is, the past will haunt you. This is a concept that can be taken out of the play and used in day to day life. If Jones would have known his fate, he might have tried to change it by changing the actions that lead up to his unfavorable
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