Richard Wright’s award winning novel Native Son tells the story of Bigger Thomas, a young poor black male living in Chicago’s Southside circa 1930. Bigger accidently kills his boss’s daughter, and much of the book is spent navigating the conflicts associated with this crime, as well as the overarching racial and socioeconomic forces that quite possibly made the crime inevitable.
Native Son has been remade into film twice, once in 1951 and again in 1986 (Oprah played in this one!), though neither version was particularly well liked.
“We live here and they live there. We black and they white. They got things and we ain’t. They do things and we can’t. It’s just like livin’ in jail.”
-Richard Wright, Native Son