Essay On Isolation In A Mercy

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Changes in the Cage: Isolation’s effects on the female characters in A Mercy
Alone in thought. Alone in the room. Remoteness isn’t necessarily a weak or vulnerable position to be in, but it is a life changing one. Depending on the kind of the isolation—forced, situational, or necessary—it can either stunt or stimulate the victim’s growth. In Toni Morrison’s A Mercy, Rebekka, Lina, Sorrow, and Florens undergo these different situations; however, they all wind up in similar states of isolation. Regardless of whether these characters intend to live an isolated life or not, the effects of seclusion are evident as each character undergoes a change for the better or worse.
As an effect of her husband’s death, Rebekka dives into a self-imposed isolation, resulting in a volte-face of her physical vigor and personality. In her forced isolation, Rebekka falls ill and hallucinates her surrounding and she believes she sees her dead daughter, which throws her into a deep depression. For Rebekka, her mourning patterns interchange with
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Lina’s isolation is consequential of her time as a member of the Presbyterian community. Lina “stumbles” along the street and “people believe she is in liquor like so many natives and [they] tell her so” (123). Their appalled reactions and her rejection from the community is due to her abusive relationship. The emotional baggage from the beatings detaches Lina from the compassion of others, and the harsh remarks of the Presbyterians ostracize Lina and her heritage from the town’s acceptance. Acceptance never comes easy to Lina, who’s been rejected from Florens after searching for a mother-daughter relation. Also, her in ability to midwife a child and the most recent death of a baby led to suspicion that she kills the babies out of jealousy. The other women on the farm try to steer clear of her because of this and because of Sorrow’s voiced

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