Essay Analysis Of Toni Morrison 's Sula

1655 Words Nov 21st, 2016 7 Pages
Two young girls, coalescing on a grass-laden field while lying on their stomachs, dig a hole in unspoken harmony. A picture of youth and innocence, this scene depicts an innocuous moment which the two girls share as a result of their juvenescence--or does it? In Toni Morrison 's Sula, this scene, among others, appears at first to be both irrelevant to the novel’s underlying theme and out of place with regard to the rest of the plot. Yet, when analyzed further, the literary devices that Morrison uses in these scenes bring readers to a vastly different conclusion. These scenes serve as windows into the mind of Morrison and even into the larger themes present in the text. So, perhaps two girls sharing a seemingly casual experience is not as random or superfluous as it appears to be at first. It is evident upon further literary analysis that the scene between Nel and Sula in which they dig a hole together is filled with significant diction, timing, symbolism, motif, and metaphor that cumulatively serve to illuminate an overarching theme: innocence is the absence of societal influence. This relatively short scene is described in great detail relative to other events in the novel; Morrison focuses greatly on the diction used. Furthermore, despite the fact that readers are given a characterization of both Nel and Sula that scarcely emanates innocence throughout the novel, Morrison chooses to remind readers that innocence is in fact present among them: “Nel found a thick twig…

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