Wednesday, October 16, 2013

James Peabody-Harrington
Understanding Literature

The Real Monster–Hatred
        The reoccurring themes of hatred and bias are alluded to in the works of Paul Lawrence Dunbar, Countee Cullen, and Mary Shelly. In Dunbar's “Theology,” talks about hell and where the speaker and his neighbors are going to end up. Cullen's “Tableau” touches on bias and discrimination and how it two boys. In the first half of Frankenstein, Shelly explains how Frankenstein is treated and feels like an outcast. Hatred is rampant in the world and the judgment that steams from it can be extremely damaging to relationships.
        In Dunbar's “Theology,” the speaker is reflecting on heaven and hell and where he and his neighbors will end up. The speaker says “There is a heaven…the upward longing of my soul doth tell me so”(Dunbar 1-3). The speaker feels in his heart and soul there is a heaven, yet there is not all good intention in his heart. Hell is a quite certain reality in the speaker's view because if not “where would my/neighbor's go?”(Dunbar 5-6). The speaker curses his neighbors to hell for unknown reasons but it revels the hatred the speaker has. The poem is short and quick to the point expressing that the speaker thinks he is superior to his neighbors because there must be a hell for them to go to. The hatred expressed by the speaker is an example of judgement and bias against all his neighbors.
        In “Tableau,” Cullen presents a scene filled with both love and hatred. “Locked arm in arm they crossed the way,/The black boy and the white”(Cullen 1-2). The two boys did not have a worry in the world as the walk down the street united in friendship but they are being judged by the people around them. “From lowered blinds the dark folk stare,/And here the fair folk talk”(Cullen 5-6). The “dark” and the “fair” people are both judgmental of the relationship between the boys. By “dark and “fair” Cullen is saying that white and black people were both judging this relationship. They view the relationship as “indignant” and are critical of it. The boys, however, are unaffected by the judgement, “Oblivious to look and work/They pass, and see no wonder”(Cullen 8-9). The boys are unaffected by the hatred because they look past the judgment placed on them. They “blaze a path of thunder”(Cullen 12). The boys continue though the hate and have a lasting relationship.
        The use of hate and judgement is explicit in Shelly's work, Frankenstein. The character Frankenstein feels hated and discriminated against for his hideous looks. Frankenstein is hideous because he is created out of corpse parts and he feels disconnected and alone. He is disconnected from relationships with other people because of his looks. He also flees because he killed William and he believes that the creator made him to be hideous and alone. The hatred he feels destroys his relationships with other people.
        Hatred, bias, and discrimination are all similarly related themes in “Theology,” “Tableau,” and the first half of Frankenstein. In Dunbar's work “Theology,” the speaker presents his view of heaven and hell and how his neighbors solidify hell's existence. In “Tableau” by Cullen, hatred is shown toward two boys that have a relationship unaffected by hate. In the first half of Shelly's Frankenstein hatred and bias is shown towards Frankenstein because of his looks. 

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