Got a tricky question? Receive an answer from students like you! Try us!

Beloved by Toni Morrison - Book Report/Review Example

Only on StudentShare
Author : jonathonwolff

Summary

Beloved, a story written by Toni Morrison, revealed a theme of captivity. It focused on the character Sethe, an African American mother who killed her daughter whom she calls Beloved. This death haunted Sethe and her living daughter Denver, which captivates them on how they run their lives to their present.

Extract of sample
Beloved by Toni Morrison


Thru the setting, the year when the story happened represents the period of African American slavery. With the main characters, wherein they are described as Black people, the book also emphasizes the kind of race that is enslaved. Also with the main characters, wherein they were ostracized by their community denotes that there are norms of the society that should be followed. The haunting memories of the past embody the imprisonment of a person to move on with the present and work towards the future. The concept of a ghost also emphasizes the entrapment in the past, wanting to relive the past and wanting to change it.
As Nellie McKay analyzed, the story is "set in 1873, a decade after the Emancipation Proclamation that ended slavery." McKay also revealed that this book was based on the story of an enslaved Margaret Garner, thus, highlighting the representation of slavery. This period African American slavery uncovers a notion that an African American race meant a slave.
Captivity is inferred in the characters' status in their society wherein Sethe and Denver could not lift their status, and they think low of their selves because they are ostracized by the community. This was proven in page 210 where Seth said, "All of it is now... ...
Download paper

Related Essays

"Beloved" by Toni Morrison
They torture her sexually and physically. She manages to escape from there and on the way back home at 124 in Cincinnati , she gave birth to her fourth child a girl whom she named Denver, to her mother-in-law Baby Sugg. A month later after the reunion with her four children and mother-in-law she was tracked down by school teacher and in the attempt to save her children from being slave she tried to murdered them, all escaped but third child, a one year old girl was killed by her. This very incident haunts her for the rest of the novel and gave birth to main character named as "Beloved" after…
6 pages (1506 words)
Toni Morrison’s novel "Beloved"
Toni Morrison's 1987 novel Beloved presents the theme of memory as a way that African-American characters in the present deal with the experience of slavery in the past. The experience of slavery is so traumatic that it has been suppressed, but finds ways to haunt the present, returning as memory "in the flesh". "Someday you be walking down the road and you hear something or see something going on. So clear. And you think it's you thinking it up. A thought picture. But no. It's when you bump into a rememory that belongs to somebody else" (p. 43) In this way, we see Beloved as "rememory", a…
3 pages (753 words)
Toni Morrison Sula and Mahasweta Devi Breast Giver
For a book of this stature, most readers wanted a heroine they could identify with- someone who was basically good despite her minor flaws and few blunders- someone like Nel. But that is not to be. Sula is the protagonist of the novel and she is by no means a traditional heroine. In fact for many, she is an evil woman who refuses to conform to societal expectations of her and does some truly inexcusable things such as sleeping with her best friend's husband. Sula presents a different, unique but definitely negative image of a woman. But it was not done to highlight the evil side of women…
3 pages (753 words)
The Bluest Eyes by Toni Morrison
They feel socially inferior and adopt the white man's hypocrisy to use against themselves.…
7 pages (1757 words)
"The Bluest Eyes" by Toni Morrison
Thus, when Pecola asks Frieda "How do you get someone to love you", the author is able to reflect upon the discourse of a system that has been able to infuse upon a generation the distinction between the master and the slave class. The subtle use of racism re-emerges in the form of the cultural icon of "Shirley Temple". Interestingly, when Morrison lets Claudia say that, unlike Frieda, her maturity and her psychological "development" has not reached a place where her hatred of the cultural icon, Shirley Temple and the dolls will metamorphose into love, the laconic irony is explicit. Claudia…
4 pages (1004 words)
AN EXTENSIVE ANALYSIS OF BELOVED, BY TONI MORRISON
But before we can relegate the statement to this easy explanation, we must consider the answers to what is ‘it’ referring to; an answer that can change depending upon the way in which it is read. By understanding the general plot line of the story and the reasons why Morrison might have built this deliberately ambiguous statement into the novel, it becomes possible to understand how the various approaches might interpret the story differently in such a way that most of them reach the same final conclusion – that here is a story that absolutely must be told.…
8 pages (2008 words)
thematic element
The monster was not happy with Victor because he was lonely and people always shied away from him. This is when it embarks on a revenge mission to ensure that Victor was also as lonely as it was. He does this by killing all the people that were close to Victor and even threatens to kill Victor himself unless he made him a beautiful lady monster for it to marry. Victor is afraid and decides to make a lady monster but the thought of the harm they would do once they are together, makes him destroy her. The big monster is not happy with this act and threatens Victor that he will visit him on his…
5 pages (1255 words)