― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “Doctor, I will be as direct with you as I can. The Confessions of Nat Turner, the Leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Va. by Nat Turner, 1800?-1831 Does you git her, preacher man, or does I? Gray reads back the confession, but Nat stops listening. This can make the experience of reading the book a difficult and challenging one. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “What I mean in simple terms, Reverend, is that once the alarm went out, there was niggers everywhere—who were as determined to protect and save their masters as you were to murder them. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “For without knowing the white man at close hand, without having submitted to his wanton and arrogant kindnesses, without having smelled the smell of his bedsheets and his dirty underdrawers and the inside of his privy, and felt the casual yet insolent touch of his women’s fingers upon his own black arm, without seeing him at sport and at ease and at his hypocrite’s worship and at his drunken vileness and at his lustful and adulterous couplings in the hayfield—without having known all these cozy and familial truths, I say, a Negro can only pretend hatred.” Additionally, Gray's claim about white workers being worse off is also shaky because it overlooks a major difference: white workers could emigrate, while slaves were in chains. Many black schools in Virginia at that time had outside privies. However, this kind of logic is shaky. But she doesn't die immediately and pleads with Nat to deliver the fatal blow. memorable and interesting quotes from great books. Prophets, both biblical and literary, are usually tested in some way, and here Nat is tormented by the vision of a seductive black woman he has seen before on the streets of Jerusalem. Then Will lit out for the woods, and had yet to be found.” Gray is also the character who claims that slavery will last for 1,000 years, so his level of useful wisdom is limited from the start. Character Analysis. "It was all the same to them," Nat notices, and they "seldom even bother to say farewell to their friends." Nat Turner Quotes - BrainyQuote I had a vision - and I saw white spirits and black spirits engaged in battle, and the sun was darkened - the thunder rolled in the Heavens, and blood flowed in streams - and I heard a voice saying, 'Such is your luck, such are you called to see, and let it come rough or smooth, you must surely bear it.' The Confessions of Nat Turner tells the story of an actual slave uprising organized by a slave named Nat Turner in the year 1831. This is the beginning of the insurrection, and Nat has failed in his first attempt to execute his white master, Joseph Travis. In his place, Will steps in and kills Travis. Picture Quote 2. The "murderous conqueror" is Napoleon Bonaparte (1769– 1821), emperor of France. interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader’s life. Instead of mentioning her name, though, he refers to Margaret as "her that showed me Him"—Margaret brings Nat back to God. Course Hero. Don’t you see the plain ordinary evil of your dad-burned Bible?” "The Confessions of Nat Turner Study Guide." But it isn't so. Hark calls this experience "feeling black-assed." The Confessions of Nat Turner is not only a masterpiece of storytelling; is also reveals in unforgettable human terms the agonizing essence of Negro slavery. No,” he went on, breaking off a black wad from a plug of chewing tobacco, “no, I’ll have to hand it to you, in many respects you was pretty thorough. Nat Turner is widely regarded as one of the most complex figures in American history and American literature. philosophy by which we live. He has represented Napoleon as "a seven-foot-tall black prodigy," though Napoleon was short and white. Start studying Confessions of Nat Turner - William Styron. Course Hero. Course Hero, "The Confessions of Nat Turner Study Guide," March 27, 2020, accessed February 23, 2021, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Confessions-of-Nat-Turner/. As he looks at field hands working, "the sight of their dumb toil" frightens Nat. This is why Nat will have to rebel: no generous master can make him a gift of freedom or self-respect. Here, in the The Confessions of Nat Turner the leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Va, you will find the full confession of Turner as he gave it to his appointed lawyer -- Thomas R. Gray -- while sitting in jail awaiting trial. “Good communication is the bridge between confusion and clarity.” – Nat Turner 3. Nat is realizing he is, at least in part, what other people consider him. March 27, 2020. A monstrous breeding farm to supply the sinew to gratify the maw of Eli Whitney’s infernal machine, cursed be that blackguard’s name! Turner is tormented by his inability to pray or read the Bible, two matters that Thomas Gray, an atheist lawyer and magistrate, uses … I was torn between detestation ... and regret that it was too late ... to save them. The only way for him to reject the identity of slave is to revolt against the slave owners. For some of us a quote becomes a mantra, a goal or a pages, Rating: The confessions of Nat Turner, the leader of the late insurrection in Southampton, Va: As fully and voluntarily made to Thomas R. Gray, in the prison where he was confined and acknowledged by him to be such when read before the Court of Southampton : with the certificate, under seal of the Court convened at Jerusalem, Nov. 5, … I am no longer oppressed by the fact (as I was for so many years after I had grown to manhood and was able to reflect long and hard on these matters) that the name on that headstone was not a nigger woman’s forlorn though honest “Lou-Ann” but the captured, possessed, owned “Lou-Ann Turner.” Nat has already struck one blow, stabbing Margaret Whitehead in the torso. Born: October 2nd, 1800 Died: November 11th, 1831 Categories: Activists, 1830s deaths. - more relevant and important. Important Quotes. world; conversely, gleaning the main ideas of a book via a quote or a quick summary is Section 3, - ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “Therefore, they is only one thing to do …” Here I stopped speaking altogether for a while, allowing these last words to enter their consciousness. She weeps for men and not with her eyes. ... Picture Quotes. Nat is having an experience of existential self-awareness, looking in a mirror and realizing, as if for the first time, who he is. choose the ones that are most thought-provoking. Will asks Nat the same question about Margaret Whitehead, but at that point Nat is the one who "gets" her. Picture Quote 4. 453 And in addition, as I think I told you before, you scared the entire South into a condition that may be described as well-nigh shitless. The Confessions of Nat Turner (1831) Picture Quote 1. This is Virginia in the year anno domini 1831. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “It is evil to keep these people in bondage, yet they cannot be freed. By sword and ax and gun you run a swath through this county that will be long remembered. Jun 4, 2016 - Nat Turner was an enslaved African American who led a rebellion of slaves and free blacks in Southampton County, Virginia on August 21, 1831, that resulted in the deaths of at least 50 white people. Turner, N., & Gray, T. R. (1831). I had” Nat Turner. Styron published his first book, Lie Down in Darkness, at age twenty-six and went on to write such influential works as the controversial and Pulitzer Prize–winning The Confessions of Nat Turner and the international bestseller Sophie’s Choice. Naw suh! Not only that, he had struck Francis savagely enough (with a lightwood fagot wrenched from a barnyard stack) as to have broken Francis’s left arm and shoulder. (2020, March 27). Woe, thrice woe, and ever damned in memory be the day when poor black men in chains first trod upon thy sacred strand!” ― Thomas Keneally, quote from The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, “The number of elected officials who were willing to put the good of the country ahead of their own ego, and the success of their political party, was minuscule.” ... Part 2. The slaves are "the only safe, solid capital which Marse Samuel could liquidate." The Confessions of Nat Turner Study Guide. Background “The Confessions of Nat Turner” is Thomas Gray’s pamphlet account of his jail-house interview with Nat Turner, the leader of a two-day slave rebellion in Virginia which started on August 21, 1831, causing the deaths of approximately sixty white men, women, and children. Minutes passed and they said nothing, then Henry’s voice broke the silence, his deaf man’s bleat hoarse and cracked, a shock in the stillness: “Us gotta kill all dem white sonsabitches. Pride!” I cried after a pause, and let my arms descend. 2 pages at 400 words per page) They was simply livin’ too well!” Although Nat has forbidden his troops to rape the masters' wives and daughters, Nat's killing of Margaret is depicted as erotically charged, the one exulting moment he has longed for throughout. We thoughtfully gather quotes from our favorite books, both classic and current, and Nat sees slaves from Turner's Mill sold in increasing numbers to cotton plantations in the Deep South. BookQuoters is a community of passionate readers who enjoy sharing the most meaningful, Lawyer Thomas Gray is talking to Nat in his jail cell, expressing disbelief that a slave who has "civilized and virtuous masters" would even want to rebel. White people's pity, kindness, and generosity only intensify the negative experience. For at the same time, such a violent act, even though well provoked and not entirely unheard of, was rare and shocking enough so as to make it likely that an atmosphere of suspicion would close in upon Negroes in general. We also accept Part 4. After experiencing this remorse for killing Margaret, he hears God's voice again. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “And I think it was a great Frenchman, Voltaire, who said that the beginning of wisdom is the moment when one understands how little concerned with one’s own life are other men, they who are so desperately preoccupied with their own. Picture Quote 3. For all of us, quotes are a great way to remember a book In addition, there is a full account of the insurrection, and Turner's own account of his background. But in the whirl of every chaos lies a strange order, waiting to be found.” I would have spared her that showed me Him. As Nat fasts and prays, he is bedeviled by temptations, among them sexuality. Born date June 11, 1925 I saw white spirits and black spirits engaged in battle, and the sun was darkened – the thunder rolled in the Heavens, and blood flowed in streams – and I heard a voice saying, "Such is your luck, such you are called to see, … Ain’t dat what de Lawd done told you? “To a mind like mine, restless, inquisitive, and observant of everything that was passing, it is easy to suppose that... 2. Will is talking about Miss Sarah, Joseph Travis's wife. However, there is nothing necessary about this difference; a literate person can speak AAVE, and despite Hark's caricatured speech, Styron presents him as the clever man Nat sees. Copyright © 2016. that we have the best of both worlds at BookQuoters; we read books cover-to-cover but ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “I reckon even you didn’t know the actual statistics, hiding out until now like you done. 23 Feb. 2021. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “The fairest state of them all, this tranquil and beloved domain—what has it now become? The Confessions of Nat Turner is the key primary document supporting historical events. William Styron. Nat is exhorting his troops, trying to instill a "sense of black militancy" in them. The The Confessions of Nat Turner: The Leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Virginia Community Note includes chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis, character list, theme list, historical context, author biography and quizzes written by … But whenever Nat confronts slaves as an anonymous mass, readers may get the impression that they are reading a white author's views of black people. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Nat is thinking about how he would answer a question Thomas Gray asked him earlier: whether Nat regretted anything he'd done. You will then at the age of twenty-five be a free man.” He paused and gave my shoulder a soft nudge with his gloved fist, adding: “I shall only stipulate that you return to Turner’s Mill for a visit every blue moon or two—with whichever young darky girl you have taken for a wife!” ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “—retaining the other half for yourself in savings for the future. The author spent countless hours poring through historical documents to provide a framework for this fictional novel, in which William Styron attempts to imagine what kind of man Nat Turner really was. Notably, the inability to connect to the divine also makes him like a pitiful animal, casting him further into the dehumanized existence that he fears. Web. Like animals, glistening with sweat ... they ply their hoes in unison. The Confessions of Nat Turner Quotes Showing 1-26 of 26. Styron's insight into the character of Nat Turner emphasizes the way his talents and privileges have set him apart from other slaves, and he imagines Nat feeling contempt for them. The gossip would get started: God durned niggers gittin’ so they hit back. “Christianity is finished and done with. The evidence was blatant and embarrassing even to some white children, like myself, who were presumably brought up to be indifferent to such inequities as the ramshackle black school that stood on the route we traveled to our own up-to-date and well-equipped edifice, with its swank state-of-the-art public address system, very advanced for the late 1930s. It is a cancer eating at our bowels, the source of all our misery, individual, political, and economic.” Real hatred of the sort of which I speak—hatred so pure and obdurate that no sympathy, no human warmth, no flicker of compassion can make the faintest nick or scratch upon the stony surface of its being—is not common to all Negroes.” Have study documents to share about The Confessions of Nat Turner? Now Nat answers, thinking to himself, he would have "done it all again" and "destroyed them all," but he would have spared Margaret. It is based on The Confessions of Nat Turner: The Leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Virginia, a first-hand account of Turner's confessions … He also points to the far worse conditions faced by slaves on cotton plantations of Mississippi and Alabama. See more on GoodReads, “She yawns for men and not with her mouth. Download Save. Called "the black Napoleon," freed slave and Haitian leader Toussaint Louverture (1743–1803) led a successful revolt and freed slaves in the French colony of Saint Domingue (today Haiti). ― Daphne du Maurier, quote from The Parasites, “At the core of every ordered system, whether a family or a factory, is chaos. 25 Nat Turner Quotes About the Slave Rebellion Leader 1. As the world communicates more and and to carry with us the author’s best ideas. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner “The most futile thing a man can do is to ponder the alternatives, to stew and fret over the life that might have been lived if circumstances had not pointed his future in a certain direction.” ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner Apart from some moments with Willis, Nat appears never to have had sex. . Nat Turner (1800 - 1831) was an enslaved African American who led a rebellion of slaves and free blacks in Southampton County, Virginia on August 21, 1831. His lack of sexual experiences is appropriate to the character of a fanatic. ― Vince Flynn, quote from Protect and Defend, “But the point is this Monsieur...the reason why Madame complains of you is not because of the immorality in itself; but because, so she tells me, you make immorality delicious.” The mob. Course Hero, Inc. As a reminder, you may only use Course Hero content for your own personal use and may not copy, distribute, or otherwise exploit it for any other purpose. Nat Turner. “Pride, pride, everlasting pride, pride will make you free!” In the Virginia Tidewater region of my beginnings, heavily populated by blacks, society remained firmly in the grip of the Jim Crow laws and their ordinance of a separate and thoroughly unequal way of life. But what the readers feel and what the slaves may console themselves with are completely different, and Styron never suggests anything else. He has been listening to four white men discuss their regrets at the existence of slavery but continue participating in it. Figger a white man treat you right, you gwine feel white-assed. 27 Mar. Lawyer Thomas Gray visits Nat and writes down his confession. Thereupon, at Mr. Pemberton’s good report of your labor—and again I have no doubt that this might be anything but exemplary—I shall draw up the papers for your emancipation. A nursery for Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas. Us gotta kill … I talked on, detailing my plans.” (12.7K votes), “Though it is a painful fact that most Negroes are hopelessly docile, many of them are filled with fury, and the unctuous coating of flattery which surrounds and encases that fury is but a form of self-preservation.” They must be educated! Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Christianity accomplished the mob. 2020. Founded in 2018, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people Turner’s confession reveals him to be an intellectual prodigy, a man of truly aristocratic temperament, and a religious fanatic. We feel If a person is deprived of basic needs, knowing of the conditions of those worse off than they are offers little comfort. (The Confessions of Nat Turner, p. 48) In August of 1831, Nat Turner, believing himself to be carrying out God's instructions, led a slave revolt intended to wipe out the white population of Southampton County, Virginia. Born place: in Newport News, Virginia, The United States who share an affinity for books. It accomplished not only your senseless butchery, the extermination of all those involved in it, black and white, but the horror of lawless retaliation and reprisal—one hundred and thirty-one innocent niggers both slave and free cut down by the mob that roamed Southampton for a solid week, searching vengeance. Print Word PDF. Oh, Virginia, woe betide thee! 2. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “That I chose Independence Day as the moment to strike was of course a piece of deliberate irony.” ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, William Styron Hark speaks in a version of African American Vernacular English, or AAVE. This viewpoint leaves Nat with attitudes that resonate with the beliefs of white racists. Despite” Themes. ― Dean Koontz, quote from The Darkest Evening of the Year, “If you are once sure what you do want, you find that everything else goes down before it like grass under a roller—(all other interests, your own and other people’s. In the cell next to him is Hark, a coconspirator. He cannot reject the label of slave. She drinks men down, she is a cave for me.” the BookQuoters community. ― William Styron, The Confessions of Nat Turner. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “What occurred had to do with Will—Sam’s fellow slave at Nathaniel Francis’s. ― Tasha Alexander, quote from And Only to Deceive. The The Confessions of Nat Turner: The Leader of the Late Insurrection in Southampton, Virginia Community Note includes chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis, character list, theme list, historical context, author biography and quizzes written by … ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “The most futile thing a man can do is to ponder the alternatives, to stew and fret over the life that might have been lived if circumstances had not pointed his future in a certain direction.” “‘Out of sixty, a couple dozen acquitted or discharged, another fifteen or so convicted but transported. This Study Guide consists of approximately 61 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Confessions of Nat Turner. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “I suppose the truth is simply that it was possible for benefits like these to accrue only to a Negro lucky enough to remain in the poor but relatively benign atmosphere of Virginia. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “Yet I was appalled. The Confessions of Nat Turner William Styron. Section 2, - Through my clever guidance they were finally able to identify with this murderous conqueror. October marks the anniversary both of his birth and of his arrest as the leader of one of the United States' most famous slave rebellions. typical of the Information Age but is a habit disdained by some diehard readers. Confucius. As he looks at field hands working, "the sight of their dumb toil" frightens Nat. Nat Turner, leader of a brutal but unsuccessful slave rebellion, sits in prison awaiting trial. William Styron (1925–2006), born in Newport News, Virginia, was one of the greatest American writers of his generation. of learning the alphabet.” “To a mind like mine, restless, inquisitive, and observant of everything that was passing, it is easy to suppose that religion was the subject to which it would be directed; and, although this subject principally occupied my thoughts, there was nothing that I saw or heard of to which my attention was not directed.” During the insurrection Nat and Will are like doubles, or mirror images, though Nat doesn't welcome this connection. Here Hark points out that it is white racists who teach black people what it is to be black and the object of their scorn. Course Hero. To free these people without education and with the prejudice that presently exists against them would be a ghastly crime.” Upload them to earn free Course Hero access! Accessed February 23, 2021. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Confessions-of-Nat-Turner/. more via texts, memes and sound bytes, short but profound quotes from books have become ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, Before Midnight: A Retelling of "Cinderella", ― Thomas Keneally, quote from The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, ― Vince Flynn, quote from Protect and Defend, ― Daphne du Maurier, quote from The Parasites, ― Dean Koontz, quote from The Darkest Evening of the Year, ― Tasha Alexander, quote from And Only to Deceive. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “But oh, my brothers, black folk ain’t never goin’ to be led from bondage without they has pride! Books are seen by some as a throwback to a previous Part 4. Word Count: 1112. The Confessions of Nat Turner Character Analysis. You did, as you say, come damn near to taking your army into this town. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “I could scarcely remember a time when I was not haunted by the idea of slavery, or was not profoundly conscious of the strange bifurcated world of whiteness and blackness in which I was born and reared. offer you some of the highlights. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “And what else did Christianity accomplish?” he said. Quote of the day. This section contains 787 words (approx. “The Confessions of Nat Turner” is based, very loosely, on a “confession” Turner gave to his court-appointed lawyer, Thomas Gray, shortly before his … Even Will's name, will, suggests he does the things the intellectual and skeptical Nat wants to but can't. Nat is an enslaved man living in Virginia before the Civil War. No niggers ever done anything like this.” Ain’t dat right, Nat?” It was as if by those words we were committed. Quotes: 10 sourced quotes total (includes 3 about) For here in this worn-out country with its decrepit little farms there was still an ebb and flow of human sympathy—no matter how strained and imperfect—between slave and master, even an understanding (if sometimes prickly) intimacy; and in this climate a black man had not yet become the cipher he would become in the steaming fastnesses of the far South but could get off in the woods by himself or with a friend, scratch his balls and relax and roast a stolen chicken over an open fire and brood upon women and the joys of the belly or the possibility of getting hold of a jug of brandy, or pleasure himself with thoughts of any of the countless tolerable features of human existence.” Course Hero. In itself this is plausible; racism can be internalized. After his capture and arrest on October 30, 1831, Nat Turner was imprisoned in the Southampton County Jail, where he was interviewed by Thomas R. … Gray contrasts the lot of Virginia slaves with that of white workers in Britain or Ireland, claiming the slaves are better off. I was deeply afraid that with such feelings prevalent, our Negroes would become unsettled by the overall mistrust and lose heart for the venture or—even worse—would under this new pressure somehow give away our great secret.” Download a PDF to print or study offline. ― William Styron, quote from The Confessions of Nat Turner, “My mother, alone among all the Negroes at Turner’s Mill, had been laid honorably to rest in the family plot among white folks (scant yards away, indeed, from the unsentimental Benjamin, now spinning in his coffin) with a marble headstone not one inch smaller nor a shade less white than theirs. The Confessions of Nat Turner Quotes. In Course Hero. Nat Turner (2 October 1800 – 11 November 1831) was an American slave who led a 1831 slave rebellion in Southampton County, Virginia. He cannot think himself a prophet while spending his days driving Miss Margaret here and there. Bio: Nat Turner was an African-American slave who led a rebellion of slaves and free blacks in Southampton County, Virginia on August 21, 1831, that resulted in the deaths of at least fifty white people and at least 200 black people. Asked him earlier: whether Nat regretted anything he 'd done slaves with that of white workers in or. Quote represents a book that is interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader s... 2018, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people who share affinity... And prays, he hears God 's voice again, & Gray, T. (! 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