All posts by eliyahoo

Glossary Write-Up

  1. Bier
  2. Firmament
  3. Fatuity
  4. Florid
  5. Idyllic
  6. Cinder
  7. Dray
  8. Muslin
  9. Aleut
  10. Capricious
  11. Sassafras
  12. Monotonously
  13. Pleating
  14. Austere
  15. Arbor


I really liked the idea or looking up words as they are needed. This is a great way of learning new vocabulary. You get an example of how the word used, and rewriting them helps commit them to memory.  I’ve been doing this with my own reading, and learned many new words this way. I find myself using these words in everyday conversations. I also try and spend some time trying figure out what the word means from context.




1. a leafy, shady recess formed by tree branches, shrubs, etc.
2. a latticework bower intertwined with climbing vines and flowers.
3. Obsolete. a grass plot; lawn; garden; orchard.

“I never saw such a garden -large and shady, full of box-bordered paths, and lined with long grape-covered arbors with seats under them.”
In “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Gilman


  1. severe or strict in manner, attitude, or appearance.
  2. (of living conditions or a way of life) having no comforts or luxuries; harsh or ascetic.
  3. having an extremely plain and simple style or appearance; unadorned.

“Meanwhile the day had become much lighter; part of the endless, grey-black building on the other side of the street – which was a hospital – could be seen quite clearly with the austere and regular line of windows piercing its facade..”

In Frank Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis”

Describing his setting, it shows us how it was to be confined to that room.




1. a fold of definite, even width made by doubling cloth or the like upon itself and pressing or stitching it in place.
verb (used with object)
2. to fold or arrange in pleats.

” ‘Cause he’s dead,’ says she, just as quiet and dull — and fell to pleatin’ her apron.”

“A Jury of Her Peers” By Susan Glaspell (pg 262)




1. lacking in variety ; tediously unvarying

2.characterizing a sound continuing on one note.

“She became a gray sky, stared monotonously at the walls, sometimes wept in her hands for hour at a time.”

“The Shawl” by Louise Erdrich


1. an American tree, Sassafras albidum, of the laurel family, having egg-shaped leaves and long clusters of greenish-yellow flowers.
2. the aromatic bark of its root, used medicinally and especially for flavoring beverages, confectionery, etc.

“Was a leaf thing too they gave em to chew on. Mint, I believe, or sassafras.”
Pg 188 (red cover) in “Beloved” by Toni Morrison


1. subject to, led by, or indicative of a sudden, odd notion or unpredictable change; erratic:
2. Obsolete. fanciful or witty.

“We survived off him as if he were a capricious and dangerous line of work.”
In “What You Pawn I Will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie


1. Also, Aleutian. a member of a people native to the Aleutian Islands and the western Alaska Peninsula who are related physically and culturally to the Eskimos.
2. the language of the Aleuts, distantly related to Eskimo: a member of the Eskimo-Aleut family.

“When I got to the wharf, I ran into three Aleut cousins, who sat on a wooden bench and stared out at the bay and cried.
In “What You Pawn I Will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie

Project 2 Halle’s View

The story “Beloved” by Toni Morrison has a very interesting writing style. Morrison uses flashbacks as a way to understand the character and their actions. Halle doesn’t have a voice of his own In “Beloved”, and I feel like he would have a lot to say. We learn about him mostly through Sethe’s flashback, and of his fate from Paul D’s memories. We find out that after seeing the things he did, Halle went crazy, and that is why he never showed up for Sethe.  One could only imagine what went though his mind, not being able to help his wife for fear of death. Going insane was the only way his mind could deal with the (psychological) pain. In this “missing chapter” from “Beloved,” we see Halle’s last few hours of sound mind, his reason for hiding out, and what went through his mind before it snapped.

Project 2 Part 2

Halle is in the rafters, right above his wife. It was easy to remain hidden from view in the darkness. He was thankful for that, for if she knew he was hiding, she would know what a coward he was.  How can he face her, after letting that happen to her. Hearing her screaming, and trying to fight them off and the worst part of all -hearing them laugh.

Earlier in the night he saw what happened to Sixo. The singing of “Seven-O” woke him up. Thinking that this night it would remain safe to stay out of sight, Halle ran to his safe spot. Up in the rafters of the barn, where he had hidden many times before. He started dozing off, but woke at the sound of someone entering the barn. By the time he maneuvered to be able to see who it was, the door was shut, and the darkness returned. A few minutes went by and he heard the sounds of more people entering the barn. Just as he was about to warn whoever was hiding below him, the nephews burst in. Holding a lantern that illuminated their ugly features, they walked in and find Sethe. “NO” he screams, but only in his head. After what they had done to Sixo, descending from the rafters to confront them would mean certain death.

For the second time that night he watched a member of his closest family being tortured right before his eyes. Many times he was so close to going down. Never mind dying, just make sure to inflict as much pain as he possibly could on those white devils. But then he thought of Sethe and three (almost four) children. If he were to die, who would protect them? Who would help Sethe escape, and get her (and the) baby to safely to freedom?

He listens to her crying, and is afraid to cry himself. How could he let her know that he was here the entire time, and have done nothing to stop them. He began whispering over and over, “I’m sorry Sethe, I’m so sorry.” Her screams in his head continued. Nothing could stop them. Sleep was impossible, food seemed revolting, his whisperings turned into rants and then shouting at imagined foes. His descent into madness had begun and there was no turning back…

Project 2 Most pivotal Scene in Beloved

Beloved’s Most Pivotal Scene

Toni Morrison’s “Beloved” is about an ex-slave, Sethe, who killed her daughter to save her child from a life of slavery. What she experienced was so dehumanizing that she felt dying would be better than going back. She makes the decision to take her children’s lives mercifully, rather than leave them in the hands of the Schoolteacher.  Although life in Sweet Home became very hard after Mr. Garner died, I feel that without the nephews taking her milk, she wouldn’t have tried “saving” her children the way she did.

When the Schoolteacher sees what she has done he thinks “…Now she’d gone wild due to the mishandling of the nephews..,” and I feel that he is right. I think that the nephews holding her down and taking her milk had a direct relation to the killing of her older daughter, which was done to save her from a fate worse than death.

Years later when she is telling Paul D about this incident, we get a little glimpse of how much this event hurt her.

“After I left you, those boys came in there and took my milk. That’s what they came in there for. Held me down and took it. I told Mrs. Garner on em. She had that lump and couldn’t speak but her eyes rolled out tears. Them boys found out I told on em. Schoolteacher made one open up my back, and when it closed it made a tree. It grows there still” (Morrison 19).

Sethe tells Mrs. Garner what the nephews had done, and in return gets beaten under Schoolteacher’s instruction. Her back was torn open, and would heal to become a tree of scars covering her back. In addition to the physical scars, this event left her with psychological scars as well. In fact, her wounds were probably not even done healing when Schoolteacher showed up in Baby Suggs yard.

The quoted passage continues:

“They used cowhide on you?”

“And they took my milk.”

“They beat you and you was pregnant?”

“And they took my milk!” (20)

Paul D. sees the tree and that is all he is could think about. Sethe including “And they took my milk!” shows us how strongly this hurt and dehumanized her.

Running away from Sweet Home, Sethe was all alone. Halle was supposed to accompany her but he never showed up.  At this point she was very pregnant, and her back was a mess. She later finds out from Paul D the reason Halle never showed up. Halle had seen what happened to her and had a mental breakdown.

“The day I came in here. You said they stole your milk. I never knew what it was that messed him up. That was it, I guess. All I knew was that something broke him… But whatever he saw go on in that barn that day broke him like a twig.”

…”It broke him, Sethe.” Paul D looked up at her and sighed. “You may as well know it all. Last time I saw him he was sitting by the chum. He had butter all over his face” (81)

Halle had seen what the nephews did to her, and was powerless to stop them. This drove him insane. Because of what the nephews did, Sethe lost her husband. He was not there to help his pregnant, barefoot wife to safety. Sethe and the baby still made it to Baby Suggs alive (thanks to Amy Denver), but with a husband and without a tree, the trip would not have taken such a devastating physical and psychological toll on her.

When Beloved comes back, Sethe is sure she would understand why she had to do what she did. Here we see Sethe thinking about what she would say to Beloved:

“…I didn’t have time to explain before because it had to be done quick. Quick. She had to be safe and I put her where she would be. … I’ll explain to her, even though I don’t have to. Why I did it. How if I hadn’t killed her she would have died and that is something I could not bear to happen to her. When I explain it she’ll understand, because she understands everything already. I’ll tend her as no mother ever tended a child, a daughter. Nobody will ever get my milk no more except my own children. I never had to give it to nobody else– and the one time I did it was took from me–they held me down and took it. Milk that belonged to my baby…. The one I managed to have milk for and to get it to her even after they stole it; after they handled me like I was the cow, no, the goat, back behind the stable because it was too nasty to stay in with the horses” (236).

Shethe was trying to keep her children safe. Going back to Sweet Home would have been a death sentence, and Sethe could not let that happen to her beloved. We see here, when she equates going back to a death sentence, that she brings up the taking of the milk. It wasn’t simply that they took it, but that it was for her baby and they took it regardless. The way they dehumanized her is on her mind when she’s explaining her actions.

She finally makes it to Baby Suggs, and starts getting better. She spends twenty-eight days with her family, new friends, and freedom. The rape of her milk, the beating, delivering in the forest, Halle still gone, these things don’t leave her mind. When the Schoolteacher shows up at 124, she loses it. She knows what he is capable of, and she goes ahead and tries to “save” her children from what she clearly believes is a fate worse than death.

If her milk hadn’t been taken, Halle would have been fine, and escaped with her. Delivering in the woods would still have been an ordeal, but with Halle there and no tree on her back, it wouldn’t have taken such a toll on her. Without that transformational event ,she would never have been able to kill her child.


Morrison, Toni. Beloved: A Novel. New York: Vintage, 2004. Print. Pgs 19, 20, 81, 236