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: Bigger Thomas' violent acts gave him a sense of freedom and identitySet in the 1930's, the portrayal of poverty and feelings of helplessness experienced by people in the inner city is as meaningful today as when it was written.Native Son is the story of Bigger Thomas, a black youth whose tragic life was drawn from Richard Wright's own experiences and memories of the Chicago ghetto. Although segregated, Wright held that the noisy crowded physical aspect of the urban environment, with its stimulating sense of power, fulfillment, and possible achievement brought forth a more obstreperous reaction than in the South. Vivid, unforgettable and heartbreaking, Wright's masterpiece forces us to witness the inhumanity of our society.The power and compassion of James Earl Jones' performance of Native Son sears this classic work into our memories forever.Richard Wright (1908-1960) left Memphis at 19 to live in Chicago where he became a writer. He grew to be considered not only the leading black author in the United States, but also a major heir of the naturalistic tradition. Wright spent his last years in Paris, where he died in 1960. James Earl Jones is one of this country's greatest artistic resources, as his acclaimed performances on stage, screen and television have proved. He has starred in such films as Dr. Strangelove, The Great White Hope, The Man, Cry the Beloved Country, and A Family Thing, and on Broadway in Othello and Fences, for which he won the Tony Award.