The major conflict of the novel is the main character’s battle with her inner self. Because she is a child of rape (her mother had been raped at the young age of 16 by an unknown man), she is a reminder to her mother of the wounds that had been inflicted on her. Her mother as a result of the rape remained this wounded but very resilient woman. Her mother came to resent her own self and body and constantly has nightmares about the rape. This, along with the fact that Sophie’s mother practiced the act of testing (which is when she basically checks on her daughter to make sure that her daughter is still a virgin), causes Sophie to grow into the same type of woman as her mother. She grows into a woman who fights a battle with herself as a woman, wife, mother, as well as daughter. She is also in turn fighting the weight of her inheritance, as well as her mother’s past experiences.
This content is from Wikipedia. GradeSaver is providing this content as a courtesy until we can offer a professionally written study guide by one of our staff editors. We do not consider this content professional or citable. Please use your discretion when relying on it.