• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Describe how Beloved successfully evokes the sufferings of the slaves that transpired in 18t h century Kentucky and Ohio.

Extracts from this document...


WT 2 CRITICAL ESSAY ON BELOVED BY TONI MORRISON Prescribed Question: why and How?? Title of the text for analysis: Beloved by Toni Morrison, 1986 Course: part 3 Literature My critical response will focus on: * The condition of the slaves in the 18th century America. I will talk about the conditions in America before and after the emancipation act. * The transportation of the blacks for slave trade from Africa. And what makes Morrison dedicate this novel to the dead slaves. What was the real life incident that inspired Morrison to write this novel. * The brutality of the white people in the treatment of the slaves. What did they do when slaves tried to run from slavery? And if they accepted the emancipation from their heart? I will also reflect on the identity crisis of the black people. The whites gave the slaves new names thereby erasing their identities as well as history. * How slavery was responsible in the extermination of 60 million black people. It is interesting to know that many of the deaths occurred when the slaves killed their children at their hands to save their future. ...read more.


Fed up with persecution and brutality, Sethe makes an attempt to flee from here, but unfortunately she is caught. As a punishment, she is humiliated, and the white slave owners suck her milk. She is flayed alive despite her being six-month-pregnant. Her husband Halle is helpless, and he is psychologically so much shaken by the figurative rape of his wife, that he becomes insane. Morrison?s novel raises a question: can a social injustice as big as slavery be perpetrated in the name of color and skin? Sethe is a woman with "iron eyes and a backbone to match.? She flees again, and reaches Ohio in the house of her mother in law, Baby Suggs. Baby Suggs is another character that has been dehumanized by slavery. She has been a slave for the last sixty years, and has led such a life that is heart rending. She bears eight children with six different fathers. All her children but one are sold into slavery without her ever having a chance to bid them goodbye. The embittered fate of Sethe is the last straw that breaks Baby Suggs? back. She dies a slow death fully convinced that ?there was no bad luck in this world but white folks." ...read more.


Their atrocious past hauls them, and more than living in the present they live in the past. Paul D is haunted by his past in the prison. He feels that he has lost his heart during the time of slavery and all he has is a tin of tobacco enclosed in his ribs. Sethe is lost in the contemplation of her act of killing her daughter, and justifying it. Beloved is all interested in the past of Sethe, and is determined to haunt her without ever forgiving her for what she did in the past. The stream of consciousness technique aided by the flashback helps the reader understand that the past of these characters is so sinister that they seem to be suspended in the limbo, or a purgatory from where there is no escape. To conclude, the novel ?Beloved? successfully evokes the sufferings of the slaves that transpired in the 18th century Kentucky and Ohio. By portraying the condition of the slaves Morrison makes the readers aware of the social and political conditions existing in America, a factor that marginalized all the blacks of the American society. Morrison dedicates the novel to the 60 million slaves who lost their lives in America on account of the evil of racism, slavery and discrimination. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. Representation of slavery in 'Beloved' by Toni Morrison

    As a result, we view the life of each person and his or her view. This is present in the narrative of the Schoolteacher whose interpretations show how many slave owners felt morally superior to their slaves and justified slavery by believing as if it were natural that blacks were meant to be slaves.

  2. Free essay

    Comparing Catcher in the Rye and the Bell Jar

    and feels alienated because of it; it is what caused most of their inner turmoil. They feel strongly about escaping the world that they have been placed in, but they want nothing more than desperately trying to fit in rather than to feel such alienation, to a point where it is almost harmful to themselves.

  1. Beloved by Toni Morrison is a vivid picture of the cruelty of slavery. ...

    The most terrible of them all is the murder of her child Beloved, this horrible crime that pursued her and destructed her life. Being a slave to her memories Sethe could not overcome this sense of guilt towards her baby although she sees that did this terrible crime to save

  2. In the novel The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison writes of a community in Lorain, ...

    After this happens, Pecola is sent to live with the MacTeers for a few days. When Pecola goes to live with the MacTeers we find out that she really likes drinking out of a certain cup that they have that has Shirley Temple on it.

  1. For this task, my main objective was to look at the world through the ...

    I felt like giving her a buzz, but I wasn't in the mood to talk to her mother again, as last time she had answered the phone. Still I couldn't get her out of my head, so I decided to call her anyway.

  2. "The Bluest Eye" by Toni Morrison. During this passage, Claudia describes a childhood memory ...

    care of her own daughter Pecola which emphasizes the idea that there is a real admiration towards white girls. Also, when Claudia, Pecola and Frieda talk about Shirley Temple, Claudia explains that she feels hatred toward her because she is the one who gets the attention of Bojangles, a man from the black community, because she is white.

  1. To what extent was President Richard Nixon responsible in the Watergate scandal in 1972-1974?

    fears, and this led him to abuse his power and resort to cover up and lies.[14] The Neutral Viewpoint On Watergate: Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward two reporters from the washington post were specifically assigned for the duration of the investigation.Their specific goal was to arrive at the truth.

  2. Comparison of Violence in The Catcher in the Rye with Their Eyes Were Watching ...

    Of these events, the most significant one may have been upon Holden?s realization that Stradlater was taking Jane Gallagher out for a date. Holden had made it clear earlier in the novel that he still had strong feelings for Jane.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work