Jazz - Toni Morrison

Why is Dorcas compared to Joe's mother?

What are ALL of the reasons for Joe to kill Dorcas?

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Dorcas is compared to Joe's mother because he considers her leaving him as abandonment. He has never come to grips with being told his mother abandoned him as a baby; he believes he needs a "woman" to make him whole, that through a lover he will find the sense of self he's never had. Dorcas likes the gifts Joe brings her, but she doesn't like being the "center" of the universe, without whom Joe can't function. She gets bored with being able to bully him into getting her way; she wants a man, and he doesn't fit the description.

Dorcas is killed because she is the reason Joe is finally tipped over the edge. She isn't the sole contributor to his problems, but she does become the excuse.