INFANTICIDE. A black mother suffering human bondage for her lifetime says, “Not for this daughter, this Beloved, no life for her.” Sethe felt the last breath drain from her infant daughter. Her spirit returns.
Toni Morrison captures the depth of America’s Slave narrative in Beloved, her eleventh novel. So worthy of the 1993 Nobel Prize for Literature. There are libraries filled with works on this subject but Beloved is complete, deep, emotional an overwhelming accomplishment by a brilliant storyteller. The book stands alone. Do you believe in ghosts, spirits? You will. Beloved is a careful, considered, committed read but the library of slavery is not complete without these emotionally crafted pages by Morrison. The author, who also wrote The Bluest Eye died in 2019 at the age of eighty eight. I almost feel that an apology is necessary for not having read Morrison sooner in my personal quest for understanding the depth of slavery.
Hear the words that rang out for years after the Emancipation Proclamation. “They had a single piece of paper directing them to a preacher on DeVore Street. The war had been over four or five years then, but nobody white or black seemed to know it.”
” Eighteen seventy-four and whitefolks were still on the loose. Whole towns wiped clean of Negroes, eighty-seven lynchings in one year alone in Kentucky, four colored schools burned to the ground, men whipped like children, children whipped like adults, black women raped by the crew.”
If you think you have read enough of this story. You have not. Beloved has much to say. Read on.