The Purpose Of Part 1: Beloved

557 words - 2 pages

The Purpose of Part One: BelovedRhetoric plays a big part in Beloved for several reasons, two of the main ones being that it helps to characterize the extremely unique and different characters while also helping the reader understand the themes and motifs that Morrison is trying to convey as well as the relationships which the characters have.When describing the way Beloved watched Sethe, Morrison writes, "Sethe was licked, tasted, eaten by Beloved's eyes". Though "tasted" gives the connotation of wanting to familiarize oneself with an essence or flavor, in this case that of Sethe's spirit, Morrison also includes the word "eaten," suggesting Beloved may consume Sethe entirely, a much more negative implication. In addition, Morrison's use of asyndeton in this sentence implies that Beloved's appetite for Sethe would only grow, suggesting this devotion may turn more sinister and destructive. Morrison also describes Beloved "like a familiar, she hovered" (68). By linking Beloved to the supernatural with both the simile of her familiar-like qualities and the metaphor of her hovering, Morrison paints Beloved's actions as particularly otherworldly. Though Sethe looks upon Beloved fondly, Morrison repetitively includes slightly more ominous undertones in her descriptions of this girl. Finally, Morrison describes "their two shadows clashing and crossing on the ceiling like black swords". Though the two women's shadows are linked by their crossing and interactions, Morrison decisively uses this metaphor to depict violence. In doing so, Morrison suggests that the unearthly or ethereal parts of these characters, namely their shadows, are at odds. By creating this ominous undertone, which suggests violence when describing Beloved and Sethe's interactions,...

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