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What is Paul D's look on life in Beloved?

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phantommisera... | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 14, 2008 at 3:03 AM via web

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What is Paul D's look on life in Beloved?

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Noelle Thompson | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted October 19, 2011 at 11:55 AM (Answer #1)

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In Morrison's Beloved, Paul D's look on life is a direct result of the evils associated with slavery.  In fact, slavery has created this man who has a "tobacco tin buried in his chest where a red heart used to be. Its lid rusted shut."

Paul D's take on life is as a wanderer.  Because of his past experiences, he feels that he can't remain in one place.  He becomes restless.  He must move on. Specifically, he is the last male inhabitant of Sweet Home.  All of his brothers were killed or sold away.  It is the Cherokee who free Paul D, ... free him to a life of paranoia.

It is Sethe who begins to change the hardness in Paul D only to be arrested by the appearance of the specter, Beloved.  She/It corrupts Paul D for a while and putting it in the simplest way possible, Paul D begins to wander again.  It is most significant that Paul D remains/returns at the end of Beloved, nixing his past demons.  For the first time in his life, Paul D's restlessness is gone.  Further, Paul D has found his place, admitting that he "He wants to put his story next to [Sethe's]."  And so he does.

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