of love and dust

2401 Words10 Pages
Cadrick Smith
Dr. King-Pedroso
ENC 1102
Summer 2014
Finding Love through Dust
In the novel, Of Love and Dust, Ernest Gaines discuss means of love in the story which help give readers a look into the interracial relationships between some of the characters in the novel. There is conflict between the couples who are encountered by the reader which hints at love between a white man (Sidney Bonbon) and black woman (Pauline Guerin), as well as a black man (Marcus Payne) with a white woman (Louise Bonbon). Although the love between Sidney Bonbon, the overseer of the plantation, and Pauline Guerin, who happens to be Bonbons mistress, is not clear in the beginning of the novel, it becomes more obvious as Gaines strike up a love interest in
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As time moves on, so does the love Pauline and Bonbon accumulate for each other. At this point no other man is able to claim her, she now belongs to Bonbon. Having their two twin boys together, Billy and Willie, both Pauline and Bonbon love their children very much. Bonbon not only has children from Pauline, but other daughters of his own. Although white men, at this time were not bashed for sleeping with a black woman, falling in love with a black woman was not something that was normal. Bonbon genuinely cared. “After so many years, Pauline falls in love with Bonbon. She couldn 't help but fall in love with him” (66). Here the reader can understand that even though white men despised black people, Gaines has turned the tables. “He wanted to be with [Pauline]-yes, you could tell from watching them at the table how much he loved her and wanted to be with her; but he had to go to a black man, and a respectful way, and ask that black man for a room. He didn’t know how to do that. He didn’t know how to talk to a black man unless he was given orders” (145). Readers suggest that Bonbon is depicted as a hypercritical person, but change into what may seem as a white man caring for black people. He loves Pauline, as well as his two twins, but cannot fully express his feelings for them. “They looked at each other like they
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