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Beloved: Integrated in Curriculum
Transcript of Beloved: Integrated in Curriculum
-Ignorance of the power of language (n-word) is unacceptable in modern society
-Students need to understand the implications of the usage of racist or dehumanizing language, which Morrison excellently displays in Beloved
-Morrison's use of metaphorical language emphasizes how slavery destroys identity, the importance of communal solidarity, and the power and limits of language.
Arhem Barkatullah, Helen Wong
Kevin Chiang, Tejas Siripurapu
Both Master and Slave
-Beloved illustrates the way in which slavery torments slaves and corrupts their minds
-Also reveals that slavery corrupted the mind of the master as well, as shown in the following scene
- As Austin Steward wrote in his narrative on slavery, “Such unlimited power [ . . . ] transforms the man into a tyrant, the brother into a demon.”
Beloved- A Story of
Slavery & its Consequences
-Written by Toni Morrison, an African American writer known for her novels' powerful themes
-Beloved takes place mainly in two locations: Cincinnati, Ohio in 1873 (post-Civil War), and a plantation in Kentucky around 1850 (pre-Civil War)
-Follows the protagonist, Sethe, and her struggles to cope with the horrifying experiences as a slave she had on a plantation called Sweet Home, which are revealed through flashbacks.
-The book also follows Sethe's relationship with Denver, her second daughter; Beloved, a possible reincarnation of Sethe's dead first daughter; and Cincinnati's community
Sethe- Ex-slave who struggles to cope with her traumatizing experiences at Sweet Home. Very protective of her children and tries to please them any way she can, even those who are already dead.
Denver- Sethe's youngest child and the most fragile out of all the characters. Initially attached to Sethe, starts to become attached to Beloved, but certain circumstances force her to change and interact with the community.
Paul D- Ex-slave who has traumatizing experiences at Sweet Home as well as in a prison in Georgia, which have caused him to hide his feelings to prevent himself from getting hurt any more.
Beloved- Mysterious woman who may be a reincarnation of Sethe's dead daughter or just another runaway slave. Becomes increasingly violent and hard to please as novel progresses despite Sethe's attention towards her.
-Beloved reveals the pain and suffering slaves endured in plantations through Paul D and Sethe's flashbacks
-Morrison allows the reader to "fear" the slave owners, and the desperation slavery caused
-Lingering effects of slavery and racism continue even after the end of slavery, becoming apparent when Sethe's neighbors isolate the family
-Instead of solely focusing on the slaves, Morrison also focuses on mentality of slave owners and reasoning behind treatment of slaves
-Slavery's lasting effects causes ex-slaves to do anything in order to escape its grasp, as shown in the following scene.
-Morrison's use of language throughout the book is innovative & shows the different dialects between the slave class and the owners
-Fresh and intricate language in Beloved has earned Morrison critical acclaim, including the Nobel Peace Prize in Literature
-Morrison utilizes language with no punctuation to illustrate Beloved's stream of thought as
she she recalls painful memories
Introduction to novel and a few themes
Most commonly used words in novel