Motherhood in Sula

Besides being a novel about motherhood, Sula, written by Toni Morrison is also a novel about the struggles of race and social class. The book allows for an insight on the two main families in the novel, the Wrights and the Peaces. Both of these families have distinct maternal relationships, which are modified by the influences of the society. The theme of motherhood is exemplified through the exploration of the race and the many social classes in the novel.
In the early chapters of the novel, Morrison describes both the Wright and the Peace families. Within these chapters, Morrison stresses the influence of relationships built between mother and daughter. Each of these families cope differently with the difficulties that race and class invoke. Eva peace is introduced as a mother who was abandoned by her husband.   The society in which Eva raised her children was made harsh through the fact that she was not only a single mother, but that she was also a minority. Eva Peace along with most of the characters in the novel are black, a minority which was discriminated against in the setting depicted. Morrison further elaborates that the Eve and her children struggled through a point of life in which they were almost faced with starvation. When Eva realized that she could no longer support family, she decided to leave the children with a family friend, for what was supposed to be one day. “Eighteen months later she swept down from a wagon with two crutches, a new black pocketbook, and one leg.”(34), Eva was absent through a piece of her children’s life which in return altered the relationships she formed with   her children.
Eva had three biological children, “Hannah, the eldest, and Eva, whom she named after herself but called Pearl, and a son named Ralph whom she called Plum”(32). Eva’s motherly love is portrayed through a chilling scene in which she sets her son Plum on fire, ultimately killing him. Plum, who was a heroine addict was described as “wanting to crawl...