A Brief History of Seven Killings

A Brief History of Seven Killings

by

Marlon James

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Demus Character Analysis

Demus is a young Rastafarian gang member recruited by Josey to assist in the shooting at the Singer’s house. He is initially horrified at the prospect of shooting the Singer, convinced that this will get him sent to hell. However, he allows himself to be plied with cocaine and persuaded that shooting the Singer is actually an important and necessary act. He dies after the attack on the Singer’s house, and in the afterlife encounters a group of Rastas dressed in white who lead him through a solemn procession and hang him as punishment for his involvement in shooting the Singer.

Demus Quotes in A Brief History of Seven Killings

The A Brief History of Seven Killings quotes below are all either spoken by Demus or refer to Demus. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Riverhead edition of A Brief History of Seven Killings published in 2014.
Part 1, Chapter 8 Quotes

Nobody who kill a police going to hell but is something else to kill the singer. I let Josey Wales tell me that the Singer is a hypocrite, and he playing both sides taking everybody for idiot. I let Josey Wales tell me that he have bigger plans and is high time we done be ghetto stooge for white man who live uptown and don’t care about we until election time. I let Josey Wales tell me that the Singer is a PNP stooge who bow for the Prime Minister. I let Josey Wales tell me to shoot up three more line and I won’t care who.

Related Characters: Demus (speaker), The Singer, Josey Wales, Michael Manley
Related Symbols: Guns, Cocaine
Page Number: 57
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation long mobile
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Demus Character Timeline in A Brief History of Seven Killings

The timeline below shows where the character Demus appears in A Brief History of Seven Killings. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1, Chapter 8
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Masculinity, Sexuality, and Homophobia Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
Witness and Storytelling Theme Icon
Demus imagines that someday, someone will write a story about what is happening in Jamaica, but... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
Demus was imprisoned for a week, during which time the police beat and tortured him. However,... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
...the jockey lost as agreed, the people in charge of collecting the winnings disappeared, and Demus was left with nothing. At this point, Josey gives Demus cocaine, a gun, and money... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
However, Josey gives Demus more cocaine and Demus allows himself to be persuaded that the Singer is actually a... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 16:
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Demus is inside a house by the sea with Josey Wales, Bam-Bam, Weeper, Heckle, Renton, Funky... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 17
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Demus has spent the night in a shack with Weeper, Funky Chicken, Heckle, and Bam-Bam. In... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Masculinity, Sexuality, and Homophobia Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
...with guns and another box filled with cocaine, and the men rush to do lines. Demus starts to feel invincible, like he could “kill God and fuck the devil.” The men... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 19
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
 Speaking in a rapid monologue, Demus describes speeding away in the Datsun and feeling himself coming down from the cocaine. Heckle... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
Demus has lost his gun. He thinks about the fact that there were no guards outside... (full context)
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Josey approaches the house, along with Tony Pavarotti and two others whose names Demus doesn’t know. They shoot, and Demus runs away. As he sprints through downtown, he sees... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 21
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Jamaican Culture and Identity Theme Icon
 Demus feels like he has been running for days. He gets on a bus, gets off,... (full context)
Part 3, Sir Arthur George Jennings
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Witness and Storytelling Theme Icon
...that people who are just about to die can see the dead. This is why Demus did not at first realize he was dead either. Seven “Rasta avengers” dressed in white... (full context)
Part 3, Chapter 3
Violence vs. Peace Theme Icon
Politics, Power, and Corruption Theme Icon
Witness and Storytelling Theme Icon
...by Josey Wales and the CIA. He then names the other perpetrators of the attack: Demus, Weeper, Heckle, and Josey. Papa-Lo has brought a woman to serve as a witness and... (full context)