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Toni MorrisonMemory and Meaning$
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Adrienne Lanier Seward and Justine Tally

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781628460193

Published to University Press of Mississippi: May 2015

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781628460193.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

From Eden to Paradise

From Eden to Paradise

A Pilgrimage through Toni Morrison’s Trilogy

(p.107) From Eden to Paradise
Toni Morrison

Shirley A. Stave

University Press of Mississippi

In her trilogy Morrison develops a sustained critique of Christianity and explores alternative theologies more capable of providing wounded souls the healing and refuge they require. In Beloved, Morrison enables a critique of the Judeo-Christian God as a divine father. Through Baby Suggs the text’s critique of Christianity is most evident in her manifestation of a theology fundamentally at odds with mainstream Christianity’s denigration of the body. In Jazz, Morrison’s critique appears through her construction of the unnamed narrator, admitting an inability to understand the characters s/he had created. The narrator’s further revelations provide a startling critique of the Judeo-Christian God. In Paradise, the focus shifts from God the Father to God(dess), the Consoling Mother, Consolata, who helps broken women to integrate body and spirit. The healing derives from rituals that enable a dissolution of the boundaries of the individual and an acceptance of self as whole. (147 words)

Keywords:   Morrison Trilogy, Beloved, Paradise, Jazz, Christianity

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