Friday, March 23, 2012

Continuation of Motifs...

It's interesting to me how far Morrison carries on her motifs. For example, we see shades of red again when Paul D repeats his guilty cry of "red heart, red heart". Also, I think one cannot overlook the symbolism of Paul D following the tree blossoms that eventually lead him to Sethe and the tree on her back. In this last chapter, we see dehumanizing once again, this time adding the element of whites being dehumanized by slavery too.

6 comments:

ParkerC said...

Yea it is interesting. Also this book reminds me a lot of The Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man. Except this book is a good bit easier to understand. The re-use of all the motifs definitely makes for a more powerful messsage

Ravin S said...

The many motifs do make the book more interesting and emphasize its importance. Although the book involves many examples of magical realism, the motifs, in my mind, are all symbolic and metaphorical. For example, the tree on Sethe's back isn't only a reminder of the lashes and slavery, but also it could represent that she will grow into something much better and gain some sense of freedom after being enslaved.

christine said...

The motifs are incredibly important. Just to name a few of the major ones:
1. trees (Brother, Sethe's back, flowering trees leading north, etc.)
2. hands/feet (shoes untied, etc.)
3. color (Baby Suggs pondering color, red heart, etc.)
4. bodily fluids (Beloved vomiting, Sethe peeing, Sethe's milk, blood during Sethe's attempt to murder her children, etc.)

Mallory said...

The color red also shows up when Paul D walks into the house for the first time and he feels Beloved's presence. This could be foreshadowing their sexual encounter when he says "red heart" over and over again.

mere said...

I really like the quote where Stamp Paid hopes that Baby Suggs stays on Blue when she is pondering color and never gets to red. I think this is because red represents the blood coming from Sethe's baby girl and therefore the blood spilled by all of her people.

mere said...

I really like the quote where Stamp Paid hopes that Baby Suggs stays on Blue when she is pondering color and never gets to red. I think this is because red represents the blood coming from Sethe's baby girl and therefore the blood spilled by all of her people.