Dana and Rufus’s Relationship Ever wonder what it's like to have a changing relationship with a plantation owner's son back in the 1800’s? Dana Franklin is a younger African-American woman married to Kevin Franklin who is a middle-aged man. Dana travels from California in 1976 back to the early 1800’s whenever Rufus is in trouble. Rufus is a plantation owner son and is also the father of Dana’s ancestor. Dana’s travels are random; she gets lightheaded and dizzy when she is about to travel.
This literary analysis will be of Octavia Butler’s Fledgling, exploring the role of lead character, Shori Matthews, who is both the narrator and protagonist of this captivating novel. The question being examined is whether or not the voice of the hybrid, genetically modified vampire, Shori Matthews, comes across as reliable, or unreliable to the reader. In the first chapter, Shori identifies only as a person, but through her quest to find out her true identity, it is later the reader learns she is actually a vampire. Can a vampire be thought of as a reliable, dependable source, capable of being taken at face value? Shori begins, “I awoke to darkness.” ( ) She is terribly burned, without clothes, starving for food, and has absolutely no memory
Octavia E. Butler characterizes Dana as instinctive to highlight the belief of how dangerous it is in the early 1800s. On her first trip to the past, Dana saves Rufus, a young white boy drowning in a river. After performing artificial respiration, ultimately saving his life, she is held at gunpoint: “I turned, startled, and found myself looking down the barrel of the longest rifle I had ever seen. I heard a metallic click, and I froze, thinking I was going to be shot for saving the boy’s life” (Butler 14). Dana finds herself in a life-threatening situation after her instinctive action of saving a boy from drowning. The “rifle” pointing at Dana was a common method of instilling fear on and violence towards slaves at the time. Due to her dark
In any novel there is multiple parts that make up and define how the novel will go, such as if the character will be good. There is always a storyline to follow and from that storyline there are many different themes that give the novel character. In the novel Kindred by Octavian Butler there are multiple themes laced into the text that make the novel what it is. For example, throughout the story there is a huge underlying theme that involves Rufus Weylin, a main character of the novel and how the environment shapes him into the man he is at the end of the novel. Kindred starts off with Dana, a black woman, who by some mysterious means is sent back in time, to the days where her ancestors were alive and enslaved by Tom Weylin, a southern plantation
A normality in the literary world is that texts deeply nestled in the crosshairs of biopolitics, gender, nationalism, and other identity particularities often fall victim to one sided and dogmatic cultural critiques. Critic after critic find difficulty regarding how to analyze and essentially read a novel where intersectionality is intrinsic to its framework such as Kindred, because it does not fit the fairly common singular literary theory mold. This notion is articulated and defended in “"Some Matching Strangeness": Biology, Politics, and the Embrace of History in Octavia Butler's "Kindred"” where Robertson explores Butler’s usage of Dana’s body to confront universal truths and to cement the idea that Dana is in a historical paradox due
Interpersonal conflict is a common occurrence in relationships, from close friends to family members. How conflict is handled can vary greatly by situation and relationship dynamic. This essay examines the interpersonal conflict experienced by the White family in the fictional TV drama Breaking Bad. First, I will describe the situation and the nature of the conflict. Next, I will discuss the communication messages present in the scene.
The little boy, John Wesley, has no problem with disrespecting women such as his grandmother. He says, “If you don 't want to go to Florida, why dontcha stay at home?” (O’Connor). Though John Wesley is yet to become a man, he obviously has already developed not a lick of respect for women. He obviously does not look at his Grandmother as if she is of equivalent value to him. Being the gender of a man, this sickenly gives him the supposed right to speak to women any way he pleases.
Harming not only slaves but free blacks as well in the novel, when Dana is transported back to the moment right after Rufus rapes Alice: Dana attempts to express how she felt about Alice’s right to refuse Rufus sexual advances and he replied, sarcastically saying “‘She must have thought she was a free woman or something”. In the novel, shows the oppression of black women. Dana asks Rufus: “‘...your father whips black people?’” and he replies “‘when they need it’” (Butler 26). Rufus does not see any wrong in his father’s violence toward black people, instead he accepts this as normal gesture because he has accepted the racist idea that blacks are inferior to whites and that it is acceptable for whites to abuse them, even saying that they sometimes “need” to be whipped.
Instead of the conflict of the story being between a husband and wife, the conflict is between a mother and a daughter. In the beginning of the story, we can see the obvious conflict between the two. The mother is what one might consider to be strict or abusive or maybe even just tough love. Many times, throughout the story, the mother is said to have hit or choked her daughter. Because of this, the daughter has turned into a disobedient girl and will do anything to go against the wishes of her mother.
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
Maryland in 1815, like much of the south, was a hot bed for slavery plantations. For slave owners in particular, it was a benefit if your slaves were not educated, as they would be less likely to question the oppressive treatment, and not adequately be able to express the conditions under which they labored. In the novel Kindred by Octavia Butler, various aspects of education are intertwined throughout, effectively depicting how education and slavery do not go together cohesively. Specifically, in the case of Dana, the novels protagonist, her intelligence led to her owners feeling inferior, which prompted many verbal and physical attacks, an exploitation of her abilities, and the overriding attempt to suppress the education of other slaves
In his “’No.’: The Narrative Theorizing of Embodied Agency in Octavia Butler’s Kindred,” Bast underscores humanity’s desire for agency, one’s “ability to reach decision[s] about themselves and [express them]” and how one’s agency can benefit a society or a community (Bast 151). In the beginning of his article, Bast labels this decision-making and expression as beneficial and necessary for a community, while simultaneously underlining society’s limitations put on mankind’s freedoms such as discrimination, prejudice, or injustice. Nevertheless, he follows up by stating that it is simply human instinct to want to express thoughts even if other factors oppress them, undermining these social limitations. Furthermore, to support this statement, Bast
In the novel, Kindred, by Octavia E. Butler, a lot of ignorance and intelligence is demonstrated all through the book which in a way is dangerous. Kindred is a wonderful work of science fiction that catches the attention of readers by telling a story of Dana, a modern-day African-American woman, who is abruptly transported from California in 1976 to the antebellum South. Not only is Dana abruptly transported back in time but she’s able to experience first-hand the cruelty of enslaved black women and men in the 1800s. The experiences of Dana and the enslaved women in the novel were viewed as mostly women working in households. However, it’s a known fact that the majority of enslaved women worked in the fields. In this novel, the enslaved women experiences mostly consisted of having to work in households as cooks, housekeepers; some as sexual slaves, and how some women became so used to the abuse that it was a norm.
The books A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines and Kindred by Octavia E. Butler are set in different time periods but you can see the theme of society and setting playing a huge role on a person’s identity. The book Kindred is set over many years in the eighteen hundreds and in nineteen seventy six. The book A Lesson Before Dying is set in the nineteen forties. In both of these books you can see how the character’s setting affects how they act. Two main motifs that show through during these time periods in that of slavery and racism. These two motifs can be seen throughout almost every chapter of each book.