English Literature - Beloved (Recap)

  • Created by: Mizgin
  • Created on: 08-05-11 15:19

Here are some key quotes from 'Beloved' prose that may be useful for the exam...

  • "suspended between the nastiness of life and the meanness of the dead"
  • "I got a tree on my back" 
  • "being alive is the hard part"
  • "a wagonload of others"
  • "men ****** cows"
  • "freeing yourself was one thing, claiming ownership of that freed self was another"

How to analyse prose fiction extracts:

  • read the novels at least twice
  • what is the purpose, narrative, viewpoint, feelings and attitudes? SPIDER DIAGRAM
  • how are the writer's purposes and intentions reflected in the language used? what about the structure? form?
  • narrative viewpoint, narration, voice, relationships between characters, is the reader addressed directly? what is the relationship between the narrator and the reader like?
  • dialogue, closeness to natural speech, how do speeches of individual characters differ? interaction between the characters? are their thoughts presented? what do these tell us about the STRUGGLE FOR IDENTITY?
  • formality? imagery? period of text written reflected? why may the reader do this?
  • grammar, sentence types and lengths, rhythmic effects, is tense significant? 
  • discourse structure - how is the extract organised and how does it develop? how does it begin and end, for instance? is paragraphing significant?  
  • do changes in paragraph correspond to changes in perspective? or tone?
  • tense may be significant, especially if it changes at any point

Now I will show some aspects of identity explored in Morrison's prose 'Beloved'... 


  • This is a very important aspect of identity explored. Black people are in a struggle for identity because they have been labelled as inferior simply because of their skin colors... 
  • for instance the CARNIVAL in the novel shows commitment and pride of race and skin color, despite the slavery going on - this represents strength


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