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Michael Short IRD Literary Paper

Michael Short IRD Literary Paper - Michael Short...

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Michael Short 11-17-09 Interracial Dynamics Literary Analysis Nat Turner’s confession approaches the violence in slavery from a different perspective than the narratives by Douglass and Jacobs. In the confession, Turner depicts the revolt he led without any remorse or sorrow for his actions. One must question the complete accuracy of the confession as retold by T.R. Gray due to the pro-slavery theme resonating throughout the text. While the accuracy of the events of the story needs not be questioned, the way the story is retold may reveal discrepancies about Turner’s feelings toward the confession. The tone in the confession, the barbaric qualities in the way Turner carries out the revolt, and the process and order in which the confession is told gives insight to the discrepancies of the pro-slavery theme, as well as the way in which the institution of slavery has bred violence. Analyzing the tone of a literary piece is key in gathering insight towards the meaning and intended expression of that work. The tone of Nat Turner’s confession is open to question primarily because a white man trying to implicate a pro-slavery theme retells it. The tone of Nat Turner, represented through Gray, is one of complete detachment. Turner expresses no emotion for the victims, or the cause he fought for, throughout a majority of the story. Nat Turner’s tone as told by T.R. Gray is represented a brutal reminiscence: Will, with one stroke of his axe opened it (the door), and we entered and found Mrs. Turner and Mrs. Newsome in the middle of a room, almost frightened to death. Will immediately killed Mrs. Turner, with one blow of his axe. I took Mrs. Newsome by the hand, and with the sword I had when I was apprehended, I struck her several blows over the head, but not being able to kill her, as the sword was dull. Will turning around and discovering
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it dispatched her also. A general destruction of property and search for
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