Department   Hiroshima shudo University  The Faculty of Humanities and Human Sciences
   Position   Associate Professor
Language Japanese
Publication Date 2021/09
Type Articles
Title The Pain of the Voiceless Baby: The Strategic Absence in Tar Baby
Contribution Type Single-Authored Publication
Journal Studies in The Humanities and Sciences
Journal TypeJapan
Volume, Issue, Pages 25-39頁
Number of pages 14
Details This paper, focusing on Michael Street, who has not received much critical attention, aims to bring his story out of the shadows and to make a contribution to the reevaluation of Tar Baby (1981), Toni Morrison’s fourth novel. Morrison depicts the painful lives of African Americans. This is a given when reading her novels. Interestingly, however, Morrison gives a significant role to white characters, to Michael in particular. He does not play a central role in the story, but he haunts it. His absence is a palpable presence. This essay tries to reconstruct his story to fill in this absence. It also illustrates how Tar Baby is unique among Morrison’s novels, but also how it is consistent with her stance as a writer in giving voices to the voiceless.