Tuesday, November 5, 2013

"I Wish I'd A Knowed More People. I Would Of Loved 'em All. If I'd A Knowed More, I Would A Loved More." Spoken by Pilate from Song of Solomon....

I never thought that I could love the novel Song of Solomon more, and I do. My love for this book is completely overwhelming at times. And, that love spills onto my students.....

This year, instead of teaching one AP literature class, I am teaching two AP classes. At times, the grading can be quite overwhelming, but the good definitely outweighs the bad. I now get to have discussions with double the number of students that I have in the past, and therefore, I am given more ideas to play around with.

Teaching this novel this year, I thought a lot about love, not necessarily romantic love, but just love between people.

Song of Solomon in the Old Testament in the Bible is a series of lyrical love poems that are written between a young woman and her lover. Many people believe that Song of Solomon is an allegory of God's love for us or divine love that is within our hearts. Soooo, Song of Solomon is all about love.

I thought a lot about why would Toni Morrison name this novel Song of Solomon? On the surface it appears that there is no love in this novel at all. However, after close analysis, it became clear, on this read, that this book is all about love.

Pilate, one of the main characters, stated as she was dying "I Wish I'd A Knowed More People. I Would Of Loved 'em All. If I'd A Knowed More, I would A Loved More." After I read this line and gave a lot of thought to Pilate, I realized that Pilate was love. Almost everything that she did was out of love. She almost killed a guy out of love for her daughter; she tried to save another character's life out of love; Milkman loved to be in her house, because she knew how to create love, and on and on and on. Pilate was one big ball of love.

There is a secret society in this novel that is called The Seven Days. "The organization is composed of seven Black men each of whom is assigned a day of the week who kill white people at random every time that a black person is murdered and the assailants are left unpunished" (Sparknotes). Guitar, a main character in Song of Solomon and member of The Seven Days, states: "It's about loving us. About loving you. My whole life is love." Those men, who were members of the seven days, stated that they did those killings because they loved their people; it was all about love.

A major theme in this novel is Journey and Flight, and that theme is based on an African American folktale called "The People Could Fly." In "The People Could Fly," Africans, who were turned into slaves, had special powers to fly back to African. So, Solomon, a character in the novel Song of Solomon, had the power to fly back to African, and one day he grabbed one of his children and flew away and left his wife Ryna and their other twenty-one children behind. I asked the students why did Solomon leave his wife and children behind, and one of the students stated that "Maybe he loved freedom more than this family." So, I began to think that maybe he flew away so that he could free himself and maybe find a way to go back and free his family. Maybe, his flight was all about love.

Yea, on this read, I realized that Song of Solomon is all about love.

If you have not read Song of Solomon, I highly recommend that you read it, and read it more than one time!!

I love this woman.......






2 comments:

judy said...

Ah, I also love Song of Solomon and Toni Morrison is one of my top three favorite authors. I like your perceptions about the book. And I will be rereading it!

Jacqueline said...

Judy thanks for reading and leaving a comment. Also, thanks for the compliment.

Happy Reading!

I have Toni on my vision board, because I really want to get to know her;she's so fascinating...

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