Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sula: Not a Hero for All

In Toni Morrison's Sula, the female characters all show some aspect of feminism. Many of the women are strong-willed, independent, and in some way intelligent. Sula, the focus of much of the story, seems to float along with the themes of the story as something different, as something not completely right. As a child she oddly inquisitive, watching her mother sleep with a myriad of men, watching her burn to death, and investigating numerous things with Nel. Her thirst for knowledge leads her to college, where she learns much before returning to the Bottom. When she returns she is seen as a demon, an evil person working. Her independence and arrogance alienate her from her family, friends, neighbors, and even Nel. She is an embodiment of many feminist virtues, but in the end, it seems that she is only slightly deified. Though her evil brings some good, not one person truly mourns her loss. It isn't until Nel realizes she has lost Sula, not her husband, that she finally acknowledges missing Sula. In the end, everything comes full circle, and the Bottom has forgotten Sula and everyone else. So, though she embodied the virtues of Feminism, she left no large mark on the history of her home town.

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