Materialism In Toni Morrison's Song Of Solomon

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Within society, materialism is often associated with success and prosperity. In the novel Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, there was a pattern of how even though the most successful characters were also the most materialistic, they were not always the happiest. Two characters that were at either end of the scale of materialism were Macon and Pilate. These very different lifestyles that Macon and Pilate lived, Macon being heavily materialistic and Pilate not at all, caused them to develop different attitudes that were influenced heavily by materialism. Through the analysis of the mystery of Pilate’s and Macon’s lifestyles, Morrison illustrates that materialism destroys people and prevents them from achieving freedom. Macon Dead was a prime example of how materialism can manipulate and destroy a person’s lifestyle. Macon got to his status of power by only being concerned about money and how it can help him to become successful. After Macon believed he killed a man, his attention was immediately taken away by the gold he found as “Life, safety, and luxury …show more content…

Pilate and her family did not live in the best conditions, as they lived in “A narrow single-story house… [and] had no electricity because [they] could not pay for the service. Nor the gas”, yet they were still the characters who were the most satisfied with their lives even when they had the bare minimum to survive (27). Compared to Macon Dead, Pilate was much happier with her life in her small house caring for her family than Macon was in his nice house with his family. This was evident to Milkman as he felt more comfort while in Pilate’s house than he ever did in his own house, which was more associated with materialism than Pilate’s house was. Because of the lack of materialism in Pilate’s life, it is simple to see how Pilate was able to thrive and live in

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