Sula is a novel by Toni Morrison that tells the story of two black girls, Sula and Nel, who grow up together in Ohio. The book is full of symbols that represent different aspects of the characters’ lives.
One symbol is the peach tree. The tree is first mentioned when Sula and Nel are children. Sula climbs the tree to get a peach, but Nel is too afraid to follow her. This symbolizes Sula’s adventurous nature and Nel’s more conservative personality.
The color white is also used as a symbol throughout the book. When Sula was a child, she fell into a ditch full of manure. Her mother washed her off, but Sula’s skin turned white from the experience. This symbolizes Sula’s purity and innocence.
The number ten is another important symbol in the book. It represents the ten years that Sula and Nel are friends before Sula leaves town. The number ten can also be seen as a symbol of completion, since it is the highest number on a scale.
These are just a few of the symbols that can be found in Sula. By looking for these symbols, readers can get a deeper understanding of the characters and their motivations.
Sula is seen in a variety of ways by many people. What they see above her brow is determined by their relationship with her. The majority of her relatives and Nel, her best buddy, see a rose. Jude sees a copperhead snake at first. The appearance of Sula’s birthmark varies depending on the viewer’s mood and perspectives.
Sula’s birthmark can be interpreted in many ways. Sula herself sees it as a snake. It is the only thing she is self-conscious about. Sula’s birthmark could also be seen as a rose. A rose is something that is beautiful, but also has thorns. Sula is a beautiful woman, but she also has a dark side. She is also known to be ‘thorny’ or difficult to get along with. Jude first sees Sula as a copperhead snake. A copperhead snake is poisonous and dangerous. This could be interpreted as Sula being a dangerous person. Shadrack, the town crazy, sees a tadpole when he looks at Sula’s birthmark. This could be interpreted as Sula being a slippery person.
Sula’s birthmark is just one of the many symbols in the novel. Sula’s name is also a symbol. Sula is the Hebrew word for peace, but Sula Peace is anything but peaceful. Sula is always stirring up trouble. The character of Sula is also a symbol of change. Sula is always changing and she represents change in the community. She is always doing things that are different and that make people uncomfortable. Sula is also a symbol of death. She brings death wherever she goes. This is seen when her husband dies and when her son dies. Sula is also a symbol of love.
The symbolism of the birthmark has everything to do with Sula’s character, according to many people. The birthmark is usually represented by a long-stemmed rose. The rose is held in high regard for its beauty, but it has several meanings. First and foremost, it is an ancient, sacred symbol that was first used thousands and thousands of years ago as an early, holy flower that may have traveled for hundreds of years because of its loveliness.
Second, the rose is a symbol of silence. Sula’s birthmark can be seen as a way to show that Sula is different and not like other people. She is unique and her difference sets her apart from the rest. The birthmark also shows that Sula is a product of nature, which makes her even more special. Sula’s mother, Hannah, was very proud of her daughter’s rose-like birthmark and would often tell her that it meant she was special and loved.
It has been embraced by the Catholic Church as the flower of the Virgin Mary. If a rose dangled from the ceiling in a meeting room, the information discussed there was to be kept secret. The rose was a symbol of Venus, goddess of love and sexuality, in ancient Rome. The rose has a sexual connotation. However, when Sula’s eye is above it, it represents her purity and strength within herself, as well as her steadfast character, which may be regarded as lovely.
Sula is also often associated with nature and animals. In the novel, Sula is constantly being described as having animal-like qualities. She is said to have a “goat’s eyes,” ( Morrison 74) and she is also very agile and quick on her feet like an animal. Sula is even given the nickname “Rabbit” by Nel. Sula’s association with animals could be seen as a positive thing because, in many cultures, animals are seen as being in tune with nature and having special powers. They are also seen as being free from the restraints of society. Sula embodies these qualities throughout the novel. She is someone who is not afraid to break the rules and does not let society dictate her life.
Sula is also often associated with the color black. Black is often seen as being negative and associated with death and evil. However, in some cultures, black is also seen as being beautiful and elegant. Sula’s association with black could be seen as a positive thing because it represents her strength and power. Sula is a powerful force in the novel and she is not afraid to stand up for herself or what she believes in.
The rose symbolizes Sula’s purity, strength, and beauty while her association with nature and animals represent her free spirit and defiance of societal norms. Additionally, Sula’s connection to the color black signifies her power and confidence. These symbols underscore Sula’s complex and multi-faceted character.
The rose breaks away from Sula’s otherwise unadorned face. This concept may be interpreted as such because the dwellers of The Bottom consider Sula to be a monstrosity. They don’t think she is malevolently evil herself, but that she was created by God to provide the residents of The Bottom greater purpose and self-esteem. After they discovered the origin of their personal calamity, they were permitted to defend and care for one another.
Sula was that source. Sula was their passport to virtue. Sula was their justification” (Morrison, 73). Sula provides the people of The Bottom with a sense of purpose and belonging. They can band together against her and feel good about themselves in the process. Sula is also a symbol of change and progress.
She is not afraid to challenge the status quo and she represents the possibilities that lie outside of The Bottom. “The townspeople looked at Sula and saw what they might have been had they not been so deeply rooted in their own soil” (Morrison, 74). Sula is a reminder to the people of The Bottom that there is more to life than what they know.