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Thesis paper on the book The Confessions of Nat Turner - Essay Example

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Nat's confession on the motive of uprising hinges on his belief that he was divinely inspired, and even was asked by Providence to do so. His entire confession is based on his fervent belief that he was asked by God to undertake this work, which he considered his life's mission…
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Thesis paper on the book The Confessions of Nat Turner
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Download file to see previous pages This firm belief had condoned his conscience of cruel murders including the entire family of his kind owner, without any apparent reason. His group of followers too believed in his divine inspiration and respected it. They thought that their cruel actions were supported by God's will and mercy, a possible parallel with today's suicide bombers. But Negros of that day had enough provocation and grievances. Hence, the divine inspiration supposed to have received by Nat formed the basis of entire horrific incident and people involved did not worry much about being tortured or going to gallows as part of their divinely designed mission that was meant to happen for a glorious future, ordained by God himself.
Nat's confession is full of 'Lord commanded me', in firm belief. It is also the basis of his Christian faith, for which Jesus suffered and died. He, being an already suffering Negro, placed himself in par with Christ, and his sufferings leading to self destruction were borne with satisfaction and fortitude.
This justified not only his own cruelty of committing cold blooded killings, but also leading the rest of the gang into destruction. It gave him much needed solace and self righteousness. It enhanced his stature in his own eyes and that of his followers and fellow sufferers. He does not seem to be particularly guilty of his doings. Hence, the divine inspiration is not the mere motive. It also renders support and focus. It removes inhibitions and doubts from the uninformed minds of these unfortunate participants of mayhem. This divinity guided mission delivers them out of all wrong doings, and removes the fear and dread of consequences. So, gallows as the ultimate end does not particularly haunt or terrify them. They have become soldiers of the very own God's work. They were his instruments through whom he had decided to shape his own desires. They were not ordinary Negro slaves any more. Their leader was directly in contact with divinity and God directs the entire episode. This gives them certain superiority over the white men, because God had chosen them to be his army on earth, and not the all powerful white. Being subjected to the worst inhuman treatment through slavery, this belief must have come as a healer, camouflaging the reality. Naturally, these unfortunate men clung to it and the rest of them looked up at Nat with respect and trust, as God had inspired him, for them. This made the most horrendous happening ('came round to the door I saw Will pulling Mrs. Whitehead out of the house, and at the step he nearly severed her head from her body with his broadax,') sounds normal, as part of a design, a necessary sacrifice for a brighter tomorrow.
Nat, throughout this hopeless occurrence, believed that God was guiding his destiny (Go through the midst of Jerusalem) and nothing, till his ignoble death, diminished his fervor of belief. Even killing the helpless did not worry or haunt his conscience in any way as God had bidden him to perform (Slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children.). His ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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