Study Guide for Kindred by Octavia E. Butler Analysis Synopsis|
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KINDRED ONLINE SUMMARY NOTES
In the meantime, Dana knows she must prepare for the next call. She
has to replace the tote that she failed to bring back with her. She finds
an old denim gym bag and begins to fill it with as much as she can carry
back with her. She feels disoriented, caught between Rufusí home and her
own. She had spent nearly two months in 1819, but she has returned on
the same day she left in 1976. Now she knows that she cannot leave the
house in case Rufus calls her again, so she calls her cousin to buy her
groceries. Ironically, her cousin believes that Kevin has beaten her,
and she is very disappointed that Dana allowed it. So, Dana continues
to wait, reading as many books as she can from her collection to try to
understand the ante-bellum South. She even falls into Kevinís book about
World War II and has to put it away when she begins to read about the
tortures of Nazi Germany. It was as though the Germans had tried to do
in a few years what Americans had worked at for two hundred.
Dana remains at home for eight days before the dizziness returns. She has time to grab her bag and awakens in the past less disoriented than before. She is in the woods either late in the day or early in the morning. She sees a young, black woman with her dress torn down the front, holding it together as she watches a black man and a red-haired white man fight. Obviously, to Dana, the white man is Rufus, and he is not winning the battle. The paradox sets in again as Dana realizes she must stop a man of her own race from killing a white man who no doubt had done something wrong to the black one. She fears that Rufus has grown up to be worse than she thought. However, just as the black man rears back to hit Rufus with a killing blow, Dana steps in to ask him what they will do to him and the woman if he kills a white man. It is enough to get the man to stand down, and then, Dana tells him how he can trust her not to talk. It turns out that his name is Isaac Jackson and that the woman is Alice and his wife, all grown up. She has also been slapped, no doubt by Rufus, and Dana feels sad, because she had hoped for better from him.
When Dana questions Alice about her friendship with the unconscious Rufus, she explains that he wanted to be more friendly than she did and had tried to get Judge Holman, Isaacís owner, to sell him south to keep her from marrying the man. Dana is surprised, because she had assumed him to be freeborn like his wife. She encourages him to run immediately. She explains to him that she will stay with Rufus and help him home as slowly as possible to give Isaac and Alice more time to get away. Before she walks away from Dana with Isaac, Alice tells her that Kevin waited a long time for her to return and then left for the North. She says that Rufus knows where he went. She also cautions Dana to be careful of Rufus who can be really crazy sometimes. She leaves Dana with too many questions and no answers.
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Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on Kindred".
. 09 May 2017