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Title: Anger and m/otherlove in the fiction of Toni Morrison
Author: Grewal, Inderjit Kaur
ISNI:       0000 0004 8497 6659
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis examines Toni Morrison's fiction and how a complex relationship between love and anger forms the centre of each narrative. This centre is identified as an ambivalent black feminist space in which angry motherlove takes shape. The ambivalent thoughts and actions of African-American mothers, in Beloved, Song of Solomon, The Bluest Eye, Sula, Paradise, Jazz, and Love, gain clarity only when they are reassessed in relation to Morrison's black feminist standpoint. Here, 'New Seeing' is required of Morrison's reader so as to recognise anger as enabling each mother's black feminist protest; she is demanding both her right to be a mother and to be an autonomous self. A uniquely formed angry motherlove represents black women empowered by the knowledge that in loving another they must never deprive themselves of self-love. Black feminist anger also works to oppose the patriarchal anger that is favoured by black men in a post-emancipation era. Hence, there shall also be consideration of how patriarchal anger affects black fatherlove. The thesis is divided into four chapters that look at motherlove in different situations. Chapter One explores black mothering in slavery and how it is protected using angry motherlove. Subsequent chapters will identify how this oppressive regime has continued to impact upon the lives of African-Americans in a post-emancipation era, with the power to distort their expressions of love and anger. Chapter Two investigates how black feminist anger offers a defence against black patriarchal anger in nuclear family homes. Angry love exists in these marital relationships that go on to produce angry motherlove and angry fatherlove. Chapter Three analyses motherlove in relation to self-love within black matriarchies. Chapter Four reflects upon Morrison's changing perspective in her later fiction; she now focuses on forms of 'otherlove' and there is the suggestion that the time for anger has passed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Toni Morrison ; African-American ; Feminism ; Mothering