The book, The Wild Seed by Octavia Butler centers its focus on two characters Doro and Anyanwu. It is based on an African Diaspora setting where Dora is the protagonist while Anyanwu is the antagonist. The story itself centers its focus on Doros struggle in the creation of a race of immortals. On the other hand, Anyanwu tries to oppose all the cruel ways Doro adopts in his quest for creating a race of immortals also referred to as seeds by the author. This essay, however, will focus majorly on Doro and Anyanwu perspective on slavery from a mental, physical and emotional view.
To start off, Doro views himself as a god, or rather a demigod, who believes that instilling fear to his seeds of colony is the only efficient way ensuring the latter pay allegiance and are true to his leadership and authority. Those who rebel against him are killed. With regards to mental slavery, this illustration clear explains that Doro uses mental fear to stamp his authority since his seeds of colony fear him and his leadership thereby cannot rebel against him lest they would be killed. On the other hand, after Doro falls in love with Anyanwu, she believes in and applies mental love, mutual respect, gratitude and trust to win allegiance from the seeds of colony. Doro learns from this and gets acquainted with new and sound methods of producing powerful seeds. Similarly, the author reminds readers that they are slaves to their own fears. Anyanwu is afraid of rebelling against Doros authority since she fears death of both her children and herself. Mental slavery as depicted as hindered genuine rebellions as illustrated in Anyanwus case.
Secondly, this essay will analyze how the duo viewed slavery with regards to the physical aspect it brings forth. Doro views physical slavery as not denying one the basics and necessities of life in the name of slavery provided the slaves pay allegiance to the master. He ensures seed colonies have plenty food, are not locked in chains and have the freedom they desire provided they do not rebel against his leadership styles. This is different from the American slavery of the past centuries where slaves had no basic rights let alone adequate food. As for Anyanwu, she believes gender slavery is not right and that is the reason she was hit by culture shock of the cumbersome gender expectations and European dresses women were expected to meet and wear in that order. She refuses to give in to gender slavery and oppression and she eventually becomes triumphant at the end of the novel.
Moving forward, the aspect of emotional slavery is illustrated by the two main characters in the novel. Anyanwu views emotional slavery as her only way in ensuring her and the children live under Doros leadership.Anyanwu is afraid of rebelling against Doros authority since she fears death of both her children and herself. She cannot manage the site of seeing her and the children die because of being rebellious to Doros leadership. This allows Doro to manipulate them despite her constant denial of his methods of managing the seed colony. Doro on the other hand, instills fear, threatens and kills dissent in front of their loved ones. He believes by doing this, the seed colonies are not capable of rebelling.
In conclusion, Octavias Wild Seed tries to outline that slavery is not always about physical whipping and chaining, but can also come through emotional and mental ways.
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