Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/35272
Title: Postmodern identity and philosophy in Toni Morrison's Sula.
Authors: Teo, Rachel Zhen Li.
Keywords: DRNTU::Humanities
Issue Date: 2010
Abstract: Toni Morrison’s Sula demonstrates its female protagonist as a postmodern individual living by a postmodern philosophy, in a modernist novel that essentially blurs binaries. Morrison’s break down of distinctions between opposites serves to expose the very model of binary thinking fundamental to morality, and thus religion. Hence, the contrast between Sula’s individualism and morality also emphasizes the contrast between Sula’s ‘multiple perspectives’, and binary thinking. The notion of ‘multiple perspectives’ is central the postmodern philosophy of lightness and this essay attempts to show how Sula’s perception of the world corresponds to her lightness of being. Lightness, as a postmodern philosophy, capitalizes on perceiving the world through imagination and diverse perceptions, rather than through the rigidity of conventional, structured perceptions. Hence, Sula’s association with lightness symbolizes her ontological status in and ideology of the world as distinct from the community. The light/weight dichotomy in the novel demonstrates the novel’s very theme of rejection of binary thinking (lightness) of which Sula symbolizes, against the rigidity of binary thinking (weight) most salient in the community’s religious perceptions. A focused discussion on the good/evil binary of religious thought, of which is opposed to the concept of lightness, will elucidate the significance of Sula’s philosophy. By discussing the condition of knowledge and reality, in the novel, as perceived by its protagonist, this essay will attempt to argue Sula’s embodiment of the postmodern philosophy of lightness.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10356/35272
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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