Character Analysis Of Rufus Weylin In Octavia Butler's Kindred '

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In Octavia Butler’s novel, Kindred, Rufus Weylin is one of the main characters who undergoes a lot of change throughout the novel, making him a round character. A round character is defined as a “major character in a story who encounters contradictory situations and undergoes transformation during this phase. Therefore, the characters does not remain the same throughout the narrative, making their traits difficult to identify from beginning until the end (LiteraryDevice).” The reader, along with Dana, follows Rufus’s growth throughout some major points in his life, from a young boy who forms a bond and friendship with Dana, to when he grows up to be a racist man who ultimately attempts to rape her. However, it is evident that Rufus’s ideology…show more content…
To such an extent that he boy seems to be using dangerous methods of retaliation. For example, in addition to Dana rescuing him from the fire he set to the draperies in his house in retaliation against his father, he also describes previously having set the stable on fire because his father sold a horse he liked (25). Based on his irrational impulses taken when things don’t go his way, it is evident that Rufus is growing up with an entitled and vindictive attitude. Dana is alarmed by Rufus’s actions and logic and analyzes, “The boy already knew more about revenge than I did. What kind of man was he going to grow up into? (25-26)” It’s clear that Rufus’s parents’ two opposite approaches to raising him are conflicting and damaging, resulting in Rufus getting the wrong message as to how he is allowed to behave. While Rufus’s mother gives him all he wants regardless of his poor behavior, his father on the other hand neglects him and resorts to violence to discipline him. The use of violence and sense of entitlement build up in him and worsen as he ages. Dana makes the observation that “Tom Weylin had probably marked his son more than he knew with that whip (39).” Dana is aware that Tom Weylin punishes his son, similarly to slaves, by whipping. It goes over Tom Weylin’s head that in the long run, he is causing his son long-term emotional damage. Despite his young age, ultimately, Rufus is destined to be a product of his violent environment and grow up to be like his

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