Slavery is an important part of American history. People had always been fighting for equal rights, even as today. As politicians and people campaigned and fought, many artists and authors expressed their ideas and thoughts through art and writing. Beloved is one of the influential book represent the life of typical women slavery in American history. Although it is not a non-fiction, but it does shown women’s perspective during that period of time. It is based on the story of an enslaved African American named Margaret Garner. Margaret Garner chose to killed her daughter instead of allowing her daughter to returned to slavery.
Therefore, the emotion and struggles from the story is actually a real representation of what was happening during that period of time. It was the time of darkness, and endless fortune. Only all of the negative could have lead to let a mother to kill her own child. In this novel, black women are merely cast members in novels. They have right to keep finding ourselves in society. The story of Beloved happened between1830s and 1840s when the black man was in the lowest station. The novel is based on a real story that a black slave woman who has tragic life but never gives up her with in self-growth.
This book is written by Toni Morrison who is the only African-Amercian woman writer who got Nobel Prize for literature. The book talks about a black slave, Sethe who is pregnant and she escapes lonely from salvery and runs to Cincinnati, Ohio. She killed her two-year-old daughter because she doesn’t want her children live as same as her. After that, she works hard and tries to forget about her past, her painful memories. This book forces on American history and black women. Toni paint a picture of how cruel4 slavery was, and show the black women’s bitter life during looking for themselves. The story starts in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1873.
A former ex-slave, Sethe escapes from salvery and runs to Cincinnati, Ohio. After twenty-eight days of freedom, Sethe tries to kill her children before the master arrives to bring her and her children back to Sweet Home rather than live as a slaves like Sethe. She only murders her two-year-old daughter by cutting her throat, who is called Beloved. Eighteen years later, Sethe lives with her youngest daughter, Denver, at 124 Bluestone Road where si her mother-in-law Baby Suggs’s house. Her sons, Howard and Buglar, run away because is haunted by the ghost who they believe is the two-year-old daughter Sethe killed.
Baby Suggs dies after Howard and Buglar leave. Sethe has to killed her daughter because she had no choice when she fail to escape. She thinks she has the right to get freedom, but she cannot make it at that moment. She love her children, so she doesn’t want them to have same painful life as her. This is a tragedy. As a mother, she knows how painful life of salves, so she would rather killed her child than allow her to be enslaved. This is a way to express her love. Paul D said her love is too thick. However, she thinks “Love is or it ain’t. Thin love ain’t love at all”(Morrison 164)
How would you feel if you kill your own child? That is what happen to Sethes. She kills her daughter Beloved. It isn’t easy for her to make the decision. Because of all the obstacles they faced, and all of the challenge they might need to face in the future. She probably thinks ending the daughter’s life was the best she can do. Many of us may not agree on Sethe’s decision. But during that period of time, it is hard to decide what is the best. The mother has definitely struggle and doesn’t want her daughter to face the same thing that has happened to her.
She knows how it would be to become a slave again, she didn’t want that to happen to her daughter. Seth didn’t see any hope in their future, there’s no light in front of them. As we talked about it now, we know that slave has ended. Due to what Sethe had went through, she didn’t see any hope of the end to the slaves. All she knew was how slavery was, and how fair the life was. She didn’t want her daughters to live the way it was. Based on her decision of killing her daughters, it could tell alot about the difficulties she had went though. Beloved is innocent.
She is killed just because she comes to this world at wrong time. Her mother love her, so she want to help Beloved to get rid of being a salve. As a victim of society at that time, Beloved wants to revenge her family. She becomes as an evil. She scares her brothers leave the house, make Denver eccentric. When Beloved came back incarnates and calls herself Beloved. She slowly changes from a sick, harmless girl asking Sethe questions about objects and events no strangers would know about, to threatening spirit seeking revenge on its killer.
She also seducing the Paul D who is the last man of the Sweet Home. She thinks never get love from her family. She comes back to life seeking for maternal love. Sethe tries to not remember bad memories of Sweet Home. She feels guilty after she killed her own daughter. So she is happy and fear after Beloved comes back. She gives her all love in every possible way to Beloved. She just wants Beloved to forgive her. She spoil Beloved, and causes Beloved the more increase selfishness and indifference. Through Beloved, Toni shows the process of growth of three generations of the black women.
The old generation realized their miseries, but they do not know how to change the situation, so they just accept them; The second generation is unwilling to be oppressed, so they try to find a way out. When she cuts the baby‘s throat, she believes that she has the right to exchange her life for freedom. At that moment, Sethe has already begun to find some ways to get liberty and determine her children‘s destiny herself. At the end of the fiction, the third generation finally finds their own identity, and then begins to build up a better future.
Denver “leaves the yard, step off the edge of the world, leave the two behind and go ask somebody for help” (Morrison 243) She know this is a way to protect her mother. With the encouragement of her passed grandma, Denver finally has the courage to go out the yard, and found her first job, then the second, and the third. When Paul D wants to express his opinion about Beloved, she stops him, “I have my own. ”(Morrison 267) Denver goes out of the yard with self-confidence, she knows who she is, and finally she has found her identity.
Slavery played an important role in shaping the America today. There are much more stories happening than what had been told. The book was published in 1987, Toni shows and reminds everyone what had happend, and the long way it came to end slavery. A mother killing her own daughter is one of the stories that could greatly represent the struggles they were facing before the civil war. Although it is not a story about the country, the war. But this type of personal stories had greatly demonstrate the most important part of human being, love.