Essay On Racism In Night Of The Living Dead

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Hordes of flesh eating murderers move slowly towards a defenseless white girl, she has nowhere to run, seemingly out of nowhere, a black man comes to the rescue as a white family ignores the obvious screams for help from the other side of a door. This exact situation occurs in the film Night of the Living Dead, and although he does everything he can, the main character, Ben, still ends up shot by the people that are supposed to protect him. Throughout the movie there is a prevalence of rebellion and aggression towards Ben due to nothing other than the color of his skin. Through the actions of Ben and those around him in their struggle for survival, racism is shown as an extremely prevalent issue. Mr. Cooper feels threatened by Ben which causes…show more content…
The main character is busy barricading the house to make it safer, Mr. Cooper is in the basement waiting for Ben to do all the work and take all the risks, much like slave owners did many years ago. Correspondingly, throughout the movie Ben is betrayed and held back by the white people around him, just as the African Americans have been for many years. The ending of this film is graphic and symbolic, as it shows the African American character being murdered and treated like something other than human, he is shot, but there are no repercussions for the shooter, instead he is praised by the sheriff. After Ben is shot the hunting party is shown sinking their meat hooks into him to bring Ben’s body to the fire to be burned. Meat hooks are used by butchers not only to move meat, but to hang it as well. This is symbolic due to all the African Americans that have been hung by radical assemblies. Racism was evident throughout Night of the Living Dead, mostly being seen through the actions of those around Ben and the plotline of the movie, leaving the viewer shocked and surprised, not only by the ending, but also from the racism that Ben went through, even in a life or death
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