Tar Baby Chapter 1: Summary and Analysis

Toni Morrison

Chapter 1: Summary and Analysis

New Characters:
Valerian Street: the wealthy American who began the development of the island and has now retired there at his estate, L’Arbe de la Croix; age 70

Sydney Childs: Valerian’s black butler for the last 40 years

Dr. Robert Michelin: a dentist from Algiers; Valerian’s friend;

invited to the island for Christmas

Margaret Lordi Street: Valerian’s second wife, who bears his only child; a former beauty queen from Maine

Ondine Childs: Sydney’s wife; cook for the household; called Nanadine by her niece, Jadine

Jadine Childs: 25-year-old niece of the Childs; a high-fashion model in Paris and New York; sometimes called Jade


(The entire section is 1238 words.)