Reading 802 Fall 11 Kindred essay

The fact that dana always appeared just in time to

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The fact that Dana, always appeared just in time to save Rufus could have also been a factor later on. As Rufus gets older , Tom takes him under his wing and he becomes a “master in training”. As Dana comes to this realization she is prompted to remember Kevin’s warning about her attempt to instill in Rufus’s young mind that she as well as other blacks should be treated just as equal as whites are. “It still might not work” Kevin told her. ”After all, his environment will be influencing him every day you’re gone. And from what I’ve heard, it’s common in this time for the master’s children to be put on nearly equal terms with the slaves. But maturity is supposed to put both in their places.(Butler 83)” And as it turned out Kevin’s prediction of how Rufus would turn out was correct. His once compassionate yet misunderstood personality has been tainted by the passing down of power. The people he had seen as friends in childhood, Alice, Nigel and Dana, he began to betray due to the seed of superiority that had been embedded in his mind. Rufus’s maturity had molded him into a younger, less strict version of his father. Unlike in his earlier years where he was punished for retaliating when his desires weren’t satisfied, Rufus was now in the dominant position calling all of the shots. He desired Alice romantically so he forced himself upon her in the The Fight , and bought her when she ran away with her husband. To Nigel, he treated him as the common slave rather than a childhood friend. To Dana, he lied to her about contacting Kevin, stood by as she was beaten by his father for his lie and was forced to do his dirty work such as talking Alice into being with him among other things. Through this transition period the bond between Tom and Rufus strengthened slightly. In times of need, they showed their concern for one another through anger towards Dana. When one was hurt they exploded at her to fix the other. For example, in The Storm, Tom acknowledges the important role that Dana plays in Rufus’s livelihood and demanded that she rush to the aide of an ailing Rufus who was suffering from malaria. In a heated argument Dana calls Tom’s bluff and threatens that if he does not start treating her like a human being, she will not come to Rufus’s rescue anymore. He ends the conversation with the literal threat “Go to Rufus. Take care of him. If anything happens to him, I’ll flay you alive! (Butler 201)” When
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Tom suffered a heart attack and Dana failed to resuscitate him he blamed her for his death knowing that it was out of her hands from the moment she touched the older Weylin. He scolded her screaming ,“Damn you to hell, you let him die! (Butler 209)” and then forced her to work in the fields for a day and endure the torture of Evan Fowler, the overseer who enjoyed breaking in new field hands through beating them occasionally to work faster and harder until they were inches away from collapsing. However, with the death of Tom, a new father- son bond had been born between Rufus and his own son .
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