The Hero in Toni Morrison's Beloved

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 481 |

Page: 1|

3 min read

Published: Mar 16, 2024

Words: 481|Page: 1|3 min read

Published: Mar 16, 2024

In Toni Morrison's novel Beloved, the character of Sethe can be seen as a hero, although her actions may not fit the traditional image of a hero. Sethe's journey throughout the novel is one of survival, redemption, and ultimately, self-discovery. Through her struggles and triumphs, Sethe embodies the qualities of a hero, as she confronts her past and fights to create a better future for herself and her family.

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Sethe's heroism is evident from the very beginning of the novel, as she escapes from slavery with her children and makes a new life for herself in Cincinnati. Sethe's decision to flee Sweet Home, the plantation where she was enslaved, shows her courage and determination to find freedom and a better life for her family. Despite the risks and challenges she faces, Sethe refuses to be a victim of the oppressive system of slavery, instead choosing to take control of her own destiny.

As the novel progresses, Sethe's heroism is further illustrated through her struggles to come to terms with her traumatic past. Sethe is haunted by the memory of her baby daughter, whom she killed in a moment of desperation to save her from a life of slavery. This act of violence weighs heavily on Sethe's conscience, causing her to question her own sense of morality and humanity. However, Sethe's willingness to confront her past and seek redemption for her actions demonstrates her inner strength and resilience.

One of the most powerful moments of heroism in the novel occurs when Sethe is confronted by the ghost of her daughter, Beloved. Beloved represents the physical embodiment of Sethe's guilt and trauma, forcing her to confront the painful memories of her past. Despite the overwhelming emotional and psychological toll of Beloved's presence, Sethe refuses to be consumed by her guilt and instead chooses to face her demons head-on. This act of bravery and self-awareness is a defining moment of heroism for Sethe, as she demonstrates her willingness to confront her past in order to heal and move forward.

Throughout the novel, Sethe's heroism is also reflected in her relationships with other characters, particularly her daughter Denver and her lover Paul D. Sethe's unwavering love and devotion to her children, especially Denver, is a testament to her strength and resilience as a mother. Despite the hardships and trauma of their past, Sethe remains committed to creating a better future for her family, showing her selflessness and compassion as a hero.

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Sethe's journey in Beloved is a powerful exploration of heroism in the face of adversity. Through her courage, resilience, and willingness to confront her past, Sethe emerges as a hero who is able to overcome the traumas of slavery and create a better future for herself and her family. By eming these qualities, Sethe serves as a powerful example of the strength and resilience of the human spirit, making her a hero in the truest sense of the word.

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Dr. Charlotte Jacobson

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The Hero in toni Morrison’s Beloved. (2024, March 15). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 19, 2024, from
“The Hero in toni Morrison’s Beloved.” GradesFixer, 15 Mar. 2024,
The Hero in toni Morrison’s Beloved. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 19 Jul. 2024].
The Hero in toni Morrison’s Beloved [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Mar 15 [cited 2024 Jul 19]. Available from:
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