African American Usage Of Magi


cal Realism
Magical realism is a literary genre that practically tricks the reader into believing elements of the supernatural. Those writing in this style craft very realistic storylines, characters, and settings using vivid details and a sense of accuracy to convince the reader that the elements in the story are realistic and entirely believable. Subtly and slowly, the writer creeps in elements of the supernatural at a pace that allows the reader to believe the unbelievable without even realizing it. By the time readers notice that "magical" things are occurring, they have been sucked into the realistic picture that has been so craftily painted for them and are duped into believing ...

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are easily able to convince the dubious reader of the existence of ghosts and the power and widespread practice of Voodism. And because the believability of a magical realism work depends on the reality of the world the writer creates, this genre allows African American writers to explore and portray the history of their people while exposing some unique African traditions and beliefs. Through an analysis of Toni Morrison's Beloved, Gloria Naylor's Mama Day, and Kasi Lemmons' motion picture Eve's Bayou, one can see how this genre is used to explore African American history and plausibly depict certain African American beliefs and motifs.
In Beloved, by Toni Morrison, the entire Suggs family talks about the ghost of Beloved as if it were a normal occurrence to have a mischievous ghost rampant in the house. Baby Suggs, Sethe, and Denver treat the ghost as they would any live human, giving in to its whims and acknowledging its likes and dislikes. In the first paragraph of the ...

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following this paragraph, the narrator grounds the reader into reality, establishing that the ghost is active in house 124 "only seventy years" after Ohio became a state (3). By relating the time frame of the supernatural existence to the historical date of the establishment of Ohio, Morrison is able to show readers that this novel is set in a real place and a real time, and that other events in the novel are just as believable. Morrison uses the mundane reality of Ohio's foundation to fix the story within a historical frame in much the same way that she uses the references to slavery to add credibility to Beloved's existence.
By delving into the pasts of the adult characters, ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 12/13/2005 08:09:34 AM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1652
Pages: 7

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