Tuesday, March 31, 2009

You tell me?

Think of a Hero from all genres of literature, and what comes to mind? Does the brute force of Beowulf spring to mind; or does the man who saves the damsel in distress come to mind? Nevertheless, these two depictions are rather commonly understood throughout all forms of text. However, can a hero be a woman, who during the time of her existence, been understood as a “witch”? All these questions adhere to the story, Sula, by Toni Morrison. In this story, a woman named Sula, seems to give her towns people a sense of camaraderie—this sense of camaraderie is because they all fear, or dislike her. So, is Sula a true hero?
To answer the question simplistically, yes, yes Sula is a hero. Being an avid reader of comic books, as well as movie buff, my understanding of a hero is someone who gives people hope, unifies while strengthening. Now, in Sula, Morrison depicts the town Bottom, as one that needs someone, or something to force cause and effect on to. In this story, the cause that is directed at Sula is negative. All the negative parts of life are believed to be Sula’s fault. But this leads me back to my question, is Sula a hero? After understanding that she as a person is not, but her presence is, it is hard not to say she is a hero. Because she acts in unharmonious, evil, and even immoral ways—which these seem illustrate her persona—Sula is a hero, just not in an epic way. The reason I believe her presence is that of a Hero, is because once she dies, people don’t have this entity to fall onto if things go wrong. Sula’s presence gave the town of Bottom as reason to unify. The town was strengthened, unified, and morally strong, because Sula was not. If that isn’t a characteristic of a HERO, than what is?

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