Use Of Water Imagery In Toni Morrison's Beloved

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The last paragraph of Beloved, focuses on the disregarded and forgotten ghost of 124 as well as African-American slavery, and the water imagery that pertains to the novel. Toni Morrison repeats twice, “it was not a story to pass on” and then for a final time switches from past to present tense reciting, “This is not a story to pass on.” This suggests that sometimes forgetting the past is the best way to move on from such catastrophe and that the best way to move forward is to think forward. At first, the reader assumes Morrison is implying that the story should be forgotten, but the phrase is repeated three times, setting off a clue. This is ironic because she is actually implying that the story needs be passed on and people should be aware of the hard ships African American slaves went through for future generations. Not many people back then wanted to think about the past, but with remembering the past, it can help appreciate the present.…show more content…
The reader assumes “her” means Beloved and that her footprints “come and go,” literally fleeing as if she was never there. Her footprints could also symbolize slavery and haunt the house and the community with memories of the awful events that happened. When Morrison repeats “come and go” twice it might emphasize that Beloved does not stay long, but comes back often or that slavery was put to rest but still had an effect on peoples lives during the time. Her footprints “fit” right into anyone else’s footprint. It does not matter if they have big or small feet, just like her presence will be attached to whoever is near. If the person takes their footprint out, it is like it never happened because there will not be evidence of it there. Just like the footprint, the ghost is not visible and therefore might not be

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