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Signifying in Toni Morrison’s Beloved
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Humanities, English.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Sustainable development
Sustainable development according to the University's criteria is not relevant for the essay/thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay discusses how language, culture and spirituality are intertwined and used as a defensive mechanism as well as an identity marker, with strong emphasis on Toni Morrison’s Beloved. Language is not just a means of communication, but an interweaving of cultural nuances and a means of establishing identity, demanding autonomy and defying powerlessness. Language is a tool that is embedded in the culture and traditions as well as the experiences of the user of that language. In Morrison’s Beloved, language is not just words used for the purpose of communication, but as a link between that which is real and that which is not; as a representation of a culture that celebrates the importance of remembering – linking the present with the past in a continuum that is particular to the culture, tradition and beliefs of the users. It also symbolises a means of defiance to powerlessness, by defecting from the norm. In Morrison’s Beloved, language as vernacular or “Black Man’s Talk” is characterised by puns, taunts, double-meanings and innuendos that are particular to the Black Race as a way of rejecting the status quo, of defying the white man’s language; of saying “Ah kin signify all Ah please, …., so long as Ah know what Ah’m talkin’ about” (Gates 212).

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 33
Keywords [en]
Identity, language, autonomy, culture, spirituality, African American, signifying, power
National Category
General Literature Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-29729OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-29729DiVA, id: diva2:1321634
Subject / course
English
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2019-06-10 Created: 2019-06-09 Last updated: 2019-06-10Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard-cite-them-right
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • sv-SE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • de-DE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf