How Relationships Across Four Toni Morrison Novels Embody C.S. Lewis' Four Loves




Miner, Emma

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Toni Morrison is a Nobel Prize winner and renowned author known for her moving and unabashedly honest stories of Black individuals living in America. C.S. Lewis is considered one of the most influential authors of the twentieth century known for his theologically laden novels and scholarly writings. In this thesis I will argue how relationships between characters across four of Morrison’s novels embody the four loves discussed in C.S. Lewis’s The Four Loves. The relationship between sisters Frieda and Claudia MacTeer and Pecola Breedlove in The Bluest Eye embody affection; Sula Peace and Neal Wright embody friendship in Sula; Paul D and Sethe of Beloved embody eros, and in A Mercy Florens and her unnamed mother embody charity. Due to Morrison’s realistic portrayal of people, characters in her novels occasionally fail to perfectly encapsulate their designated love. I will discuss these failures in addition to their success in embodying their prescribed love.