Mind Map of Beloved

Beloved
overview
Symbols
Themes
Toni Morrison's Beloved tells the story of Sethe, an escaped slave who murders her own infant daughter rather than allow the child to grow up in slavery. Her past returns to haunt her home and family as a ghost of Beloved, the dead infant.
Trees
The trees are a place of safety but also symbolize hiding, darkness, fears, and haunting.
Water
Water crossings mark important events, including Sethe's escape to freedom and Beloved's rebirth in human form.
Beloved
She symbolizes slavery, a link to the past that still enslaves Sethe emotionally.
214
The house number is the fact that the beloved Sethes's third child is dead
Identity
Sethe struggles to regain her identity, which was nearly destroyed by slavery.
Guilt
Sethe survived slavery but murdered her infant daughter to save her from it.
Past vs. Present
Sethe tries to reconcile the horrors and pain of the past with a haunted present.
Main Character
Baby Suggs
Sethe's grandmother, voice from the past
Paul D
Sethe's friend from Sweet Home
Beloved
Deceased daughter, haunts house in form of young woman
Denver
Sethe's 10-year-old daughter
Sethe
protagonist, escaped lave, murders infant daughter
Numbering
28
Days of freedom before Sethe murders her child
1988
Year Beloved was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction
1993
Year Morrison was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature
1998
Year a film version starring Oprah Winfrey and Danny Glover was released
Author
TONI MORRISON BORN 1931
Raised in a diverse community in Ohio, Morrison developed a deep understanding of the oral and folk traditions of African American culture. Beloved embodies Morrison's belief that novels preserve the history of black people, which had previously been maintained through oral tradition.
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