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Donnie Morrison Essay On Women's Names

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Morrison multiple uses of names, as Stein puts, “In her use of women’s names, Morrison questions the concepts of womanhood and motherhood which obtain in our society” (qtd. in Stein 62).
By naming the female characters, the “New Fathers” of Ruby have not succeeded in degrading the women’s value. However, they give them the opportunity to show up as complete individuals in their journey. Indeed, the act of naming continues in Morrison’s novel as it becomes the women’s tool of empowerment. As the head of the Convent, Connie who is later on known as Consolata, chooses to provide the females with new names. This act of naming stands in dialogic opposition to the demonizing names given by the men of Ruby. Starting by Gigi, she is the uncontrolled one who exceeds limits and norms according to men’s views. At the Convent she is no longer Gigi, her name is altered to a peaceful one that is associated with God’s mercy and compassion. Gigi becomes “Grace,” the name that Connie selects for her as a promising one that might bring with it salvation, “Mercy and simple good fortune took to their heels and fled, grace alone might have to do” (Morrison
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It focuses on female images of power and helps deconstruct patriarchal images in the scripture” (130). In Morrison’s novel, the women create their own religion in worshipping pagan goddesses, in contrast to Ruby’s Biblical religion. During the women’s presence in the shelter, Ruby’s men have been exposed to unfamiliar things found in the women rooms. Morrison’s narrative voice indicates, “Graven idols were worshipped here. Tiny men and women in white dresses and capes of blue and gold stand on little shelves…in the wall”
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