Toni Morrison’s Beloved – A Novel With Universal Appeal, Depth and Brilliance
By Rakesh Ramubhai Patel

Toni Morrison (1931), an American writer, enjoys a good position as one of the most popular as well as successful black female writers. Her work celebrates the black experience by way of featuring mythic elements, compassion with the humanity in poetic language. Her fifth novel Beloved (1987), which is remarkable for its depth, brilliance and universal appeal, won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. She also won the Nobel Prize in literature in 1993.

What is the Novel All About?

The novel Beloved is the story of Sethe, an unfortunate mother who prefers killing her daughter Beloved rather than letting her grown up as a slave.

This tale is set in Reconstruction Ohio. Morrison vividly sketches the dark picture of slavery and its dehumanizing effects with all mental and physical traumas inflicted on the survivals. She beautifully weaves a ghostly stale in a realistic narrative.

Themes in The Novel:

The novel deals with many complex and enduring themes such as black Americans’ relationship to slavery, the quest for individual, cultural identity, the importance of family and community, the nature of humanity. It is because of Morrison’s unique treatment to these themes her work achieve universality.

Morrison’s Style in the Novel:

Beloved is considered as Morrison’s most successful novel. She makes use of multiple timeframe. She beautifully makes a way for the fantastic occurrences in the novel like that of reappearance of Beloved. The language is poetic which shows her lyric storytelling ability very clearly.

Though the novel stimulated considerable controversy, accusations of racism, several months after its publication, it’s a great piece of work one should really appreciate for its merit.

Rakesh Patel is an aspiring poet, freelance writer, self-published author and teacher. Read short poems by Rakesh Patel.

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