The paper “The Marrow of Tradition by Charles Chesnutt” examines one of the most distinguished works of the early twentieth century. Created by Charles Chesnutt, the novel elucidates the existence of apartheid and ethnic-racial hatred and discrimination prevailing in almost all parts of the USA…
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Since the blacks had been brought as captives from African states in order to work as slaves of the white population for the future centuries to come, the majority of white individuals still regarded them as their slaves even after over two decades of their forced migration from their native lands. The novel begins by portraying the Carteret family, the white racists, who would not allow inter-racial marriages or sexual union (1991 7-8), and look for the supremacy of the whites in one way or the other, due to the very reality that they consider the blacks as inferior and brutal as a community, which aptly involves criminal activities and offences, putting the peace of society into grave jeopardy (11). It is, therefore, in Christening party, they indirectly condemn the marriage of Olivia Carteret’s father with a nigger woman many years back, from which a baby-girl Janet, Olivia’s half-sister, was born. Mrs. ...
nest of black servant Sandy, admired praised by Delamere, his master; as he does not confine his abhorrence to himself and family; on the contrary, he propagates against the blacks, and refutes the possibility of accepting interracial marriages as legal ones in the local newspaper in order to influence the minds of other white people too against the African Americans (28-29). In addition, he also persuades the dominant and influential white individuals to strive to cleanse the area of the monstrous Negroes (33). Chapter V discusses how Dr. Miller is forced to travel in separate Jim Crow car, because of being the member of the black community, and hence an intellectual is also treated with displeasure like ordinary African Americans by the white people (52). Since Dr. Miller is interested in establishing a hospital for the blacks in Wellington, it clearly reveals that the blacks did not have access to the healthcare centers meant for the white population. Nevertheless, it also demonstrates that the blacks also disliked the whites, and racial hatred co-existed in both sides in the town. Somehow, his assistance to his white teacher Dr. Burns in the treatment process of Dodie Carteret proves that the well-educated stratum of society was comparatively less prejudiced and biased towards other racial groups (77-78). The author elucidates the dogged-will of the white elites including Belmont and McBane for expelling the blacks from the town and humiliating them at any cost by involving them into false cases and disputed criminal affairs (81-83). The next chapter introduces Janet and Dr. Price and exclaims Mrs. Carteret’s detestation for Janet for being the member of a mixed race (98).
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His literary achievements comprise of a biography of Frederick Douglass, three novels and around 80 short stories. There is no denying the fact that Chesnutt commands a prominent place in America's literary history. The central theme of most of his works hovers around the injustices that happened to be the inevitable fate of most of the African Americans of his times, and to some extent even today.
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