Friday, March 22, 2013
Water as a Metaphor for Transition
When Paul D is trapped in the "chain gang" with the other 45 men, his escape is the product of heavy rains. Morrison writes, "It rained" (Morrison 129). There cages had a mud floor and with the heavy downpour and ensuing erosion of the mud bottom, the slaves were able to escape to freedom. Paul D is able to start a new chapter in his life. When Sethe crosses the river with Stamp Paid, she begins a new part of her life. In both instances Morrison uses water as a metaphor for transition. Whether it is a river carrying someone across to the other side or water "carrying" someone under a jail cell, it allows for a type of transitioning to a new life and freedom. Paul D is able to go north with the help of the Cherokee Indians and Sethe is able to find 124 Bluestone Road.