This essay "The Struggle for Individuality" has a total of 1251 words and 9 pages.
"The Struggle for Individuality"
Richard Wright was a young man of extreme intelligence and openness to speak his mind. Richard’s
writings in "Black Boy" are a collection of his alienation, not only from white society, but from his own
people. In Richard’s boyhood there was virtually no chance for a personality such as his to develop freely.
Everything conspired against personal freedom, not only the white social structure, but the black as well.
Richard was treated brutally and tyrannically at home in order to prevent his being treated the same way or
worse outside of home and especially in the white society. His family tried to enforce a code of conduct
on him, so when in the presence of whites he would not be harmed. The family was trying to convey to
Richard that black children must never strive to be more than black children; if they did, not only would
they suffer a terrible fate by the white people, but their families would as well. This was a method of
limiting one’s individuality, fortunate!
for Richard he overcame and aspired to become a great writer.
Richard’s struggle for freedom and individuality started at a young age with the brutality from his family
and the black society. We see this very early when Richard is beaten, almost to death, by his mother and
father for setting the house on fire. On could argue that the beaten was justified, but the extreme method of
this beaten can not be justified. It appears that Richard was more afraid of the punishment he would
receive from his family, rather then the punishment he would receive from the white people. He shows this
when he is fighting with white boys on his way to the grocery store and his mother keeps sending him back
to purchase the groceries. "I have the choice of being beaten at home or away from home" (p20) He chose
to fight the white boy’s rather then get beaten by his mother, this helped build his individuality. This
brutality within the family continued with other members of his family after his mother became ill. This
was to ensure that he learn the c!
ode of conduct that he should follow towards white people. Richard’s greatest struggles were with Granny
and Aunt Addie, as they tried to control his individuality. Richard attends the Seventh-Day Adventist
school taught by his Aunt Addie and rebels against its strict rules. While in school he was faulted and
punished by his Aunt Addie for throwing walnut shells on the floor, which he had not done. Richard stood
by his street gang code of not telling on someone for faults they committed, because of this he was
punished again. Richard did not excel in school while his Aunt was his teacher. Once Richard transfers to
the public Jim Hill School, he excels academically and gains friends. Richard was finally given up as a lost
cause by his family; they expect nothing of him anymore, so he was free to do as he chooses. Richard now
is no longer one who struggles against his family in order to win their approval, so he turns his rebellion to
Richard growing awareness of a world outside his own, starts with inquires of his mother on the subject of
white people. Richard feels that he may be late in learning to sense white people because he never really
thought of them, they just existed. Also, the fact that "…tardiness in learning to sense white people as
white people came from the fact that many of my relatives were ‘white’ -- looking people" (p27) His
mother tries to protect him from seeing his condition for what it is. Richard’s mothers and family’s efforts
to make him comply with the standards set by a white society succeed only insofar as Richard could take
care of himself. They failed, however, in keeping him unconscious of his own individuality. His inquires
continue of black and white people. Richard’s openness of asking questions and making statements to
white’s lead to a view of the brutality and rejection of blacks by whites. This restricted the ability of the
Negro to strive for individuality.
Richard’s home and school life have prepared him,
Topics Related to "The Struggle for Individuality"
Existentialists, Hollywood blacklist, Richard Wright
Essays Related to "The Struggle for Individuality"
Existentialist View of Human Condition Existentialist View of Human Condition Two of the main principles of Existentialist Human Condition are: That man exists and then creates himself and what man chooses for himself he chooses for everyone else as well. Lets examine the first principle: man exists and then defines himself. What it means is that man is created on this earth and is nothing but a body, blood and guts. What he chooses to do and to be is what makes him a man. If a man comes into this world and chooses to steal, cheat,
Existentialism in the early 19th Century Existentialism in the early 19th Century Major Themes Because of the diversity of positions associated with existentialism, the term is impossible to define precisely. Certain themes common to virtually all existentialist writers can, however, be identified. The term itself suggests one major theme: the stress on concrete individual existence and, consequently, on subjectivity, individual freedom, and choice. Moral Individualism Most philosophers since Plato have held that the highest ethical g
Existentialism Existentialism In our individual routines, each and every one of us strive to be the best that we are capable of being. How peculiar this is; we aim for similar goals, yet the methods we enact are unique. Just as no two people have the same fingerprint, no two have identical theories on how to live life. While some follow religious outlines to aspire to a level of moral excellence, others pursue different approaches. Toward the end of the Nineteenth-Century and on through the mid-Twentieth, a m
No Mind No Self The Buddhist ConceptNo Mind, No Self: The Buddhist Concept In Eastern traditions the concept of no-mind (or no-self) means prior to thought, prior to desire, prior to any conceptualization, whatsoever. It is discovered by stripping away all sensation, desire, concepts, intellection, volition, and awareness of I. It partakes of the Oneness of all. Buddhism calls this mind the Buddha Nature, and much of Buddhist practice is aimed at its realization. They also call it no-mind because it is without any grasping at a
ExistentialismExistentialism Existentialism is a concept that became popular during the second World War in France, and just after it. French playrights have often used the stage to express their views, and these views came to surface even during a Nazi occupation. Bernard Shaw got his play Saint Joan past the German censors because it appeared to be very Anti-British. French audiences however immediately understood the real meaning of the play, and replaced the British with the Germans. Those sorts of hid
Eugene Ionesco as one of the most prominent writers of the theater of Eugene Ionesco, as one of the most prominent writers of the theater of the absurd, had the purpose, in writing Rhinoceros, of portraying absurdity in society, and promoting his existentialist views. Ionesco was a firm believer in the ideals of the absurd theater, and has been called the father of the absurd theater by many critics. Ionesco went to great lengths to express his beliefs through his writing, and it was on account of this that Ionesco disliked false interpretations of his work. “I a
The Allegory of the Cave and Existentialism “The Allegory of the Cave” and “Existentialism” Plato’s, “The Allegory of the Cave” and Sartre’s, “Existentialism” both have a similarity of anguish but have different views of goodness, subjectivism and limitations of life, and human existence. In the “Allegory of the Cave,” the people in the cave are chained to see just the shadows on the wall to which they perceive to be real. As one of these prisoners escapes, they walk into the light to find that what he once saw in the cave was actually j
Existentialism Existentialism Existentialism is the form of writing which exemplifies the belief that there is no hidden meaning to life, nor a higher purpose of existence, but that man is on earth for his or her lifetime, and that only, and after which they will cease to exist with no life after death or anything of that sort. It also exerts life is mundane, and because of this, existentialists or existential characters often go through their particular life or story living one day after the next, day by day
The Pursuit of the SelfThe Pursuit of the Self Traveling back, far back into the bohemia of yesterday, we find ourselves visiting Prague, then belonging to Austria-Hungary, in the early part of the nineteen hundreds. This was a time of artistic creativity and genius. One person comes to mind in particular when thinking about this era, Franz Kafka. Contained within a letter to one of his friends, Franz Kafka once wrote, I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us… We need the books that affe
Interventions in the Narcissistic DisordersInterventions in the Narcissistic Disorders On Narcissism: Psychological Theories and Therapeutic Introduction Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called ‘narcissistic personality disorder’ is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem. The grandiosity of the narcissist, howeve
Interventions In The Narcissistic DisordersInterventions In The Narcissistic Disorders Introduction Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called â€˜narcissistic personality disorderâ€™ is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem. The grandiosity of the narcissist, however, is often so pervasive that we tend to dehumaniz
NarcissismNarcissism Introduction Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called â€˜narcissistic personality disorderâ€™ is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem. The grandiosity of the narcissist, however, is often so pervasive that we tend to dehumanize him or her. The narcissist conj
Point Of View In Grendel And BeowulfPoint Of View In Grendel And Beowulf Contrasting points of view in Grendel and Beowulf significantly alter the readerâ€™s perception of religion, good and evil, and the character Grendel. John Gardnerâ€™s book, Grendel, is written in first person. The book translated by Burton Raffel, Beowulf, is written in third person. Good and evil is one of the main conflicts in the poem Beowulf. How is Grendel affected by the concepts of good and evil? Grendel is an alienated individual who just wants to be
PSYCH THEORIESPSYCH THEORIES On Narcissism: Psychological Theories and Therapeutic Interventions in the Narcissistic Disorders Introduction Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called â€˜narcissistic personality disorderâ€™ is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem. The grandiosity of the
Narcissism Psychological Theories and Therapeutic Interventions in theNarcissism: Psychological Theories and Therapeutic Interventions in the Narcissistic Disorders Introduction Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called narcissistic personality disorder is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem. The grandiosity of the narcissist, however,
Existentialists I Am Me and You Are YouExistentialists: I Am Me, and You Are You Existentialists view mankind as individuals whose unique past experiences establish personal characteristics that set all of us apart. This idea can be best expressed in an intuitive statement by a celebrated individualist, Tarzan. “Me Tarzan, you Jane” is at the nucleus of the beliefs of the existential atom. This seemingly simplistic statement relates to existentialism by leading us to the idea of man's individualism, guiding us to belief of existence
Bernard MalamudBernard Malamud I. Bernard Malamud Bernard Malamud (1914-1986) was born in Brooklyn, New York. From 1932 to 1936 he studied at the City College of New York, where he received his bachelor's degree. From 1937 to 1938 he was a student at the Columbia University. In 1942 he received his Master's degree. From 1940 to 1948 he taught evening classes at the Erasmus High School, the same High School he went to from 1928 to 1932. In 1943 his first two short stories were published in Threshold and America
Existentialist Themes Of Anxiety And AbsurdityExistentialist Themes Of Anxiety And Absurdity Existentialist Themes of Anxiety and Absurdity In a world with such a vast amount of people their exists virtually every different belief, thought, and ideology. This means that for every argument and every disagreement that their exists two sides of relative equal strength. It is through these disagreements that arguments are formed. Arguments are the building blocks in which philosophers use to analyze situations and determine theories of life. Fo