How Bigger Thomas is Affected by Chance.

Essay by CASslackerstonerHigh School, 11th gradeA-, October 2005

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Chance: noun; a force assumed to cause events that cannot be foreseen or controlled. By chance one can acquire riches beyond their wildest dreams. The lives of two people mysteriously intertwine, finding love by pure coincidence. A man driving in his car looks down to light his cigarette at an inopportune moment, missing a stop sign and crushing the bones of an innocent pedestrian. In Richard Wright's "Native Son", Bigger Thomas is the unfortunate victim of chance. He kills two women and is sentenced to death by electrocution, all for the reason that he found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Bigger was in the wrong place at the wrong time when Mary Dalton's mother came into Mary's room, as Bigger stood above the bed, where an intoxicated Mary lay mumbling. It was known to Bigger that if Mrs. Dalton heard Mary talking and found him in the room, they would assume he was trying to rape her, they would find out he disobeyed their orders of taking her to school, and got drunk with her instead, and he would lose his job.

For this reason he pressed a pillow over her face, mimicking a false sleep that Mrs. Dalton believed to be genuine. Suffocating her with his pillow, Bigger had accidentally killed Mary Dalton. Because of the fact that Bigger found himself placed by chance in a compromising situation, he was forced to react to the newly created circumstances. "He killed his first victim in an unpremeditated moment of panic- and found himself caught up by forces outside his control and understanding."(Back Cover)

Due to the racism present in Bigger's time period, he was born in the wrong place at the wrong time. Chicago was extremely segregated in the era of American history he...