Kindred

The Concept of "Home" College

Home is oftentimes perceived as one of the places where a person feels safest and as one of the places where one likes being most. This seems to be very straightforward, but in her novel Kindred, Octavia E. Butler complicates this concept of home by using the conflicting emotions of the characters Dana and Kevin to show how having sharper experiences somewhere affects their idea of what and where home is. Dana and Kevin are both taken from one time to another and in Dana’s case, more than once, causing them to rethink their ideas of what/where home to them is. During their stays in the 19th century, they have many experiences that make them feel more connected to it and make them start to feel like it is their home.

Towards the beginning of the story, Dana is sure that the new apartment she shares with Kevin in 1976 is her home. After her second visit to Rufus, she still says, “God, I hurt, and I’m so tired. But it doesn’t matter. I’m home” (44). She hasn’t been in the 19th century for very long and has had only a few experiences there, most of them not very good. She also hasn’t really had any connections with the people there besides realizing that a few of them were her ancestors, so she understandably views her 1976...

Join Now to View Premium Content

GradeSaver provides access to 747 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 4485 literature essays, 1451 sample college application essays, 183 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.

Join Now

Already a member? Log in