Cyclical time and the pleasure principle in Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon and beloved
Murrell, Sherietta Farron
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Beyond the most literal meaning of pleasure, the novelist represents pleasure as both the opportunity for and the eventual attainment of racial freedom. Such a reach encapsulates the near-miracle in personal and communal rebirth of the individuals who quest for it. Hence the stages of pleasure are 1) those initially of loss, 2) then of recognizing the loss, subsequently of 3) seeking a recovered happiness and eventually 4) accepting the peace of self-transformation. In her metaphors, the processes mean the same as attaining gold and flight, the metaphors of self- completion. Morrison’s new inclinations for the African American community in Song of Solomon and Beloved provide a psychological depth to her literary form.