The Lovely Bones and Beloved Essay

1737 Words Sep 28th, 2009 7 Pages
A comparison of the ways that the dead affect the living in the novels Beloved by Toni Morrison and The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold.

In the novels that I have chosen to study, several themes are prominent in both. Both novels deal with a brutal murder of a young female, and the impact surrounding her death. They also deal with the idea of the dead, directly or indirectly communicating with the living. The novels address the theory that ‘ghosts’ cannot move onto the next life until they have resolved unfinished business on Earth. The idea that the living are tied to those who die and untimely death is also present in both novels. As well as these themes which are present in both novels, the novels also share a similar non linear
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Similarly, the use of "forget" suggests a lack of conscious effort on the part of the characters; instead, they "disremember" things, with the implication that they force them to the back of their minds.

As well as an emotional affect, there is also a physical affect on the living caused by the dead, or their presence. In both novels the ghosts use sexuality for their own personal advantage. In Beloved, Beloved seduces Paul D even though he is married to Sethe. She does this in the hope that Paul D will be forced to leave 124 and she can have Sethe to herself. In the Lovely Bones, Suzie uses sexuality to feel close to the world and the people that she left behind. Suzie take possession of Ruth, the girl she brushed past on her way to heaven. While in control of Ruth’s body, Suzie kisses Ray Sing. Ray was Suzie’s first and only kiss while she was alive. Although both ghosts uses sexuality, each novel uses it for a different reason, Beloved uses is it for her own personal agenda, while in The Lovely Bones, Suzie uses sexuality as a way of feeling closer to her past life and the people that she misses. Both novels address the idea that the dead can take on a physical appearance and become visible to the living. In Beloved, they believe that the girl who appears at the door of 124 is in fact the physical form of the daughter Sethe murdered eighteen years previously. In The Lovely Bones, Suzie is not

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