Sweet Home Short Story Analysis

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Sethe’s childhood was full of loss and trauma. In her view, “‘What happened to her?’ [Denver] ‘Hung. By the time they cut her down nobody could tell whether she had a circle and a cross or not, least of all me and I did look.’[Sethe]” (p. 61) This means Sethe was only a little girl when her mother died and Nan took her in. This demonstrates that Sethe’s childhood was tough from the beginning. Another example of her childhood is, “She told Sethe that her mother and Nan were together from the sea. Both were taken up many times by the crew. ‘She threw them all away but you.’” (p. 62) Morrison’s point is that Sethe was lucky enough to stay alive and not thrown into the sea. This is important because Sethe’s father was also black and he loved…show more content…
There was something blessed in his manner. Women saw him and wanted to weep” (p. 17) This exemplifies how kind he was when Sethe told Paul D. He could make women let their emotions out and Paul D. would be there to listen. What is more important, is how kind he was to Sethe when they were at Sweet Home. Life at Sweet Home was not entertaining especially when schoolteacher arrives and treats them like real slaves. It follows then how Sethe was treated as a slave and the reason why she killed her children.

While Sethe was a slave, she made the choice of killing her children in order to protect them. In her view, “It ain't my job to know what's worse. It's my job to know what is and to keep them away from what I know is terrible. I did that.” (p. 165) This means Sethe did not want to know what would happen if her children were still alive. This demonstrates that Sethe wanted the best for her children and wanted to kill them so they wouldn’t have to go through slavery. Another example of Sethe’s experience as a slave is, “Whitegirl. That's what she called it... A chokecherry tree. Trunk, branches, and even leaves. Tiny little chokecherry leaves. But that was eighteen years ago. Could have cherries too now for all I know.” Morrison’s point is that Sethe was beaten so bad, her lashings became infected and was described as a chokecherry tree. This is important because the tree symbolizes the enduring strength Sethe went through. According to Paul D., “You got two
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