Throughout Song of Solomon, Toni Morrison takes the reader on an adventure. Her exquisite writing techniques allow the characters to develop in a manner that is unique yet impactful on the other characters in the story. Morrison uses certain personalities and experiences of characters to represent the generations of African-Americans post slave society. The difference in values and behavior is apparent especially between two characters. Although Milkman and Macon Dead are completely distinct individuals, Morrison uses particular writing techniques to demonstrate how each character influences is each other along with developing their unique journeys as African-American men in the early 1900s.
Milkman clearly signifies the new generation of African Americans living in the United States as he experiences privileges that were obsolete forty years before. Milkman is born in a hospital known as Mercy Hospital, which is an all-white hospital. The hospital has developed a nickname of no Mercy Hospital due to its track record of refusing to let African-Americans in the hospital. Morrison sets the stage by making Milkman born here to insinuate the new sense of privilege and acceptance, which isolates his character from feeling any empathy towards the previously oppressed African-Americans. Milkman’s lack of understanding stems from him being two generations removed from slavery. He has no concept of the horrible cycle of oppression against African-American’s (people of his own race) because he’s been sheltered from racism by his elevated social status.
Morrison wisely chooses Milkman as the protagonist in order to scrutinize the collective group of people who act as a threshold to the new generation of African Americans. Although there...
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...ng her $2 dollar rent, despite the fact that she is an old woman taking care of four children, trying desperately to make ends meet. Macon had no sympathy or sense of family values as he was stripped of that from an early age due to the death of his parents. He was never able to pass that down to Milkman who had to go through his own journey to discover family values and love.
Milkman and Macon both differ in so many ways. However Morrison is able to apply unique characteristics to both of their journeys based on their childhood experiences and their communities influence around them. She creates these individuals by elaborating on the harsh realties of African-American history, which served as the roots for both characters lives. The way they each viewed the world was shaped by the generations before them and they will influence the generations of the future.
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