Does injustice end with one hand-out? Richard Wright questions “pay-it-forward” morality through his novel, ‘Native Son,’ where an awkward racial encounter turns deadly, virtually setting Chicago on fire. Jon and Melissa struggle through a story even more dense and depressing than their previous entrées into Greek tragedy and the southern Gothic. What they find are harsh truthes, baked into a well-written but bleak look at class, sex, and race in the 1930’s.

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