A Mercy

Love in Place of Protection College

Toni Morrison’s A Mercy deals with life’s biggest problems regarding the choice to love and protect over the ability to stay close to the ones that you love. The end of the novel, narrated by Florens mother, gives key insight to the foundations of the book. She knows, above all else, that the protection of her daughter must come first, leaving Florens scared, alone, but ultimately safe. Morrison weaves a tale that shows how the people in Florens life, together, make up a mother figure, and are ultimately the source of her chosen gained mental freedom at the end of the novel, even though all the while she believes she is alone.

From the very beginning of the novel, it is made apparent that Florens is searching for a mother figure in her life. Parental love and influence are some of the most important shaping factors in a child’s life. Without proper love and affection, children become dissociative, unable to interact with people on a level perceived to be normal. Florens is a little odd because her mannerisms come from so many different role models. From the very beginning, Jacob is perceived as a loose father/ protective figure. He provides her with long awaited stability in her life. Jacob takes Florens in for his own...

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