Orginal Publication Date
Explorations in Sights and Sounds
John R. Cooley's Savages and Naturals is a critical analysis of the ways in which "modern" American writers have depicted black characters. His thesis, briefly stated, is that in their fiction white American writers portray black Americans as primitives-as "savages" or as "naturals." "Savages" are those who are perceived as intrinsically evil and who consequently represent a threat to civilized society. "Naturals" are those who are simple, essentially rustic folk (the term is only roughly synonymous to the traditional "noble savage").
Copyright, ©EES, The National Association for Ethnic Studies, 1984