Choice Versus Coercion In Toni Morrison's Sulla

analytical Essay
1703 words
1703 words

Choice Versus Coercion In Arlie Russell Hochschild’s, “Love and Gold,” she depicts the economic influences that turn choices of mothers in Third World countries into a precondition. Similarly, in Toni Morrison’s, Sula, a recurring theme of the struggle between independence, the ability to choose, and doing what’s best for others, or coerced decisions, is imminent throughout the entire novel and revolved around the main character, Sula. Often times the factor that weighs down choice is responsibility. Choices are seemingly infinite until you factor in what choices will affect which people and why. Both mothers and caregivers have to put their dependent before themselves, therefore limiting their choices. Dependents become extensions of their …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Compares arlie russell hochschild's, "love and gold," and toni morrison’s "sula." both mothers and caregivers have to put their dependents before themselves, thus limiting their choices.
  • Analyzes how hochschild's "love and gold" explains that mothers in third world countries are being forced to work abroad for extended periods of time.
  • Analyzes how hochschild's "love and gold" claims that economic pressures coerce caretaker’s choices are modeled in sula by the contrast between choices made by sula and mothers in the novel.
  • Analyzes how eva's instinct and need to provide for her family coerced her to endure the consequences of living with one leg. the bottom cultivated harsh living conditions, especially as a single mother.
  • Analyzes how nel's transition from childhood to adulthood and her evolving friendship with sula are coerced by the economic suffering found in the bottom.
  • Analyzes how sula's rejection of the traditional role of housewife and mother strengthened her independence, including her capacity to make completely unrestricted choices.
  • Concludes that caregivers have both societal and economic pressure weighing down on them, and their sense of choice is limited.

Combining self-identity and self-determination, Sula chooses to pursue her desires, creating her own standards of right and wrong. Her rejection to conform to society’s mold meant to bind poor black women stands in stark contrast with the mothers in the novel, who are coerced to make decisions based on bettering their families. While caregivers have “choice” to some extent, their sense of choice is limited by their role as caregivers and replaced by coercion from society. In Hochschild’s, “Love and Gold,” she explains that heartbreaking fact that mothers in Third World countries, in an attempt to make ends meet at home, are being forced to work abroad for extended periods of time. These mothers, often highly trained professionals, obtain higher pay working as caregivers in the First World than they would at any other job in their home country. “But by doing less skilled—though no less difficult—work as nannies, maids, and care-service workers, they can earn $200 a month in Singapore, $410 a month in Hong Kong, $700 a month in Italy, or $1,400 a month in Los Angeles” (Hochschild 18). This large disparity in pay encourages the discerning idea that children living in the Third World might be better off without the physical presence …show more content…

Set in the 1900s, Sula depicts the struggles, of mostly female characters, that comes with living in the poor town of The Bottom. Both the location, a small predominantly black town situated in Ohio, and the time period augments the discrimination these African American characters endured. The white people claimed the fertile land found in the valley and left the dry, desolate land found in the hills to the black people. Continually, the people of The Bottom had difficulty finding jobs because of the objection white people had against hiring black people. These circumstances led to severe economic hardship for the characters in the

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