The Character of Beloved from Beloved by Toni Morrison Essay

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The Character of Beloved from Beloved by Toni Morrison

The character of Beloved, from Toni Morrison?s novel, Beloved, is an embodiment of the evils of slavery. Beloved, the daughter of a former slave, is a child who died before her time, therefore her existential search for identity parallels the search of self that slavery created in an innumerable amount of human beings. When reading the novel, Beloved, it is vital for the inexperienced reader to pay attention to the trials of Beloved, as they are the trials of slavery. The character of Beloved, was reborn through the souls of slavery, and gathered their collective memories as she emerged from watery depths, through a river akin to the ocean crossed by slave ships enroute to
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This becomes evident when Beloved, Denver, and Sethe, begin to recount their own individual memories, that entwine with one another. Beloved?s memories, however, contain an element that is lacking in the other narratives, a sense of otherworldliness. Such knowledge of slavery could only be obtained through a journey to the spiritual world. Therefore, Beloved is a paradox of naivete and timelessness as she recounts memories of crouching with the dead, experiencing a ?hot thing.? Slavery, in itself is a combination of naivete and aged maturity as well, for upon freedom, those who performed tasks upon command, those who took a beating without so much as a cry, do not know how to exist in the world. Those who are reborn from slavery, as Beloved was reborn from her untimely death, experience a period of readjustment, much as Beloved did when she re-entered the world from beyond. As, ?everything dead coming back to life hurts,? Beloved felt the need to lash out at those who wronged her, to the extreme that it controlled her existence. It is conceivable that many former slaves felt as Beloved did, that they must inflict revenge upon those who had wrongfully oppressed them. The vengeance and pain inflicted on Sethe by Beloved took various forms. Beloved, unsure as to whether she sought maternal love or revenge, took to such actions as attempting to choke Sethe, then bringing her back to life through the healing touch of her fingertips.

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