Mistakes And Denial In Richard Wright's Native Son

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The novel Native Son by Richard Wright speaks volumes about mistakes and denial, and how in situations a mistake can be the opening to a much deeper darker hole. In the novel one could even say the denial shown by the protagonist is a large reason why the book ends with Bigger behind bars. While Bigger continued to murder throughout the story, he kept pushing his voice of reason to the back of his mind, completely ignoring it which ultimately ended with Bigger’s demise. In Native Son Bigger cannot seem to accept his mistakes, his bad deeds are brushed aside, In his mind he cannot see himself as the villain; This denial and ignorance leads to his imprisonment.

From the moment the reader meets Bigger, it is clear that he makes mistakes and
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Bigger hotly replies, blatantly shutting his mother down when she tries to bring his ignorance to his attention. Bigger himself even acknowledges the filth he lives in, but maintains his denial through his seeming lack of care, “he knew the moment he allowed what his life meant to enter fully into his consciousness, he would either kill himself or someone else” (14). Bigger seems to block anything unwanted from bothering him, which is a terrible form of denial as it just leads to the problems manifesting themselves in Biggers mind. Bigger’s suppression of the truth leads him to close off his mind and not even address the issue, which is a large reason why Bigger struggles with the issues he does later in the book. Richard Wright places hints as to who Bigger is behind the anger throughout the novel, and it shows that Bigger is in severe denial. He knows that things are not okay and yet he still ignores them and does the wrong thing. This willful ignorance progressively takes a toll on his friends and family. The beginning of the novel tries to show that not only is Bigger in deep denial, and reinforces this facet of his character with contrast--every other character is aware of his denial and tries to coax him out of it, but are
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