SULA: Containment Essay In Sula the idea of containment is used a lot in the story and in how the characters live there lives. There is the idea of containment at the very beginning of the book when the white farmer tricks his servant to living in the top of the hills therefore containing him from the rest of the people. In the beginning of the book Shadrack s passages show many examples of containment. For example, Shadrack at the beginning with the meal tray divided into three triangles.
He also says, All their repugnance was contained would not explode or burst forth from their restricted zones. There are many more examples of containment with Shadrack for example, When they bound Shadrack into a straitjacket, he was both relived and grateful, for his hands where at least hidden and confined to whatever size they had attained. Another example of containment is in the way that the characters live their lives. For example not only are they living in the bottom which isolates them from all the white people that live near them.
They also contain everything in their lives. An obvious example of this is every January third Shadrack would celebrate National Suicide Day He did this because, It was not death or dying that frightened him, but the unexpectedness of both. If one day a year were devoted to it, everybody could get it out of the way and the rest of the year would be safe and free. Most of the people that live in the bottom have the same idea of containment. They do not want anything to change they want to have everything just contained.
An example of this is when they say about the people in the town that They regarded integration with precisely the same venom that white people did. Nel is another example of someone in the book that contains her life. She lives her whole life in the bottom. An example of this is when she is talking to Sula and she says, Sula was wrong. Hell ai t things lasting forever. Hell is change.
This shows how Nel lives her life. How she does not want anything to change so she lives in the same place for her whole life trying to contain everything. Sula is the complete opposite of Nel in the respect that Sula thinks; The real hell of Hell is that it is forever. Sula believed that hell was when things did not change and that s why she lived her life the way she did Everything in the bottom is contained.
The people of the bottom even like to contain their evil. For example they thought Sula was an evil witch but They would no more run Sula out of town than they would kill the robins that brought her back. The people in the bottom believed that The presence of evil was something to be first recognized, then dealt with, survived, outwitted, triumphed over. In conclusion in the book Sula containment is an aspect of the characters lives, and of the town itself. It is a important and reoccurring theme throughout the book.