From the Bible, we know that Paul was first Saul, also like Sethe, was a captive of his own demons. Paul is a tireless evangelist who proclaims a theology of salvation through faith: "For I am not ashamed of the gospel; it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who has faith, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed through faith for faith; as it is written, 'The one who is righteous will live by faith. Simple as it may seem, people really saw Paul at that time to have a complete turnaround from Saul, the ruthless tyrant who killed people of a different set of beliefs from him and what he transformed himself. Pauls heresy at that time is centered on four major premises, the latter three of which are not found in the New Testament: (1) There is salvation in Jesus; (2) This salvation comes via the intangible expression of faith; (3) Faith is a product of God's grace, not human performance.
; and (4) As newcomers to the faith like Paul, we also can be apostles with Christ. Paul's view explains that anyone can experience the godhead acting not from motives of "payback" but acceptance. Like children, we are becoming "joint heirs" with Christ as members of the household of God. (Paul the Apostle and Salvation thru Faith). Just as in the novel, opening scenes reveal a house 124 was spiteful, full of a babys venom. Even if it now belongs to Sethe, the house was still full of venom and resentment, hate and powerlessness.
The house is termed spiteful because it is enveloped by the spirit of Sethes baby who died 18 years ago. Thus, the house is full of ghosts both literally and figuratively. It is not a comfortable place to be in. These scenes are part of Sethes past but she still carries it till the present time when she is living in a house far away from the trauma of the past. This was the life of Sethes a poor slave.
At that time, all slaves lived without freedom, but not all slaves lived under the same conditions. The daily lives of slaves depended on the size of plantation they worked, the kind of work assigned to them, and the treatment they received. Most slaves lived in drafty, one-room cabins with dirt floors. Many times, two or more families would live together in one cabin.
They slept on the ground on mattresses filled with cornhusks. Some describes their bed as a plank 12 inches wide and 10 feet long. His pillow was a stick. Slaves wore shabby cotton or wool clothing, which was provided by the master twice a year. They ate pork fat, molasses and cornmeal. Sometimes, they would raise vegetables.
But often the food did not have important nutrients. Indeed, they valued their family for it was the only thing left of their self-dignity (Wikipedia). Another literary criticism by editors Nellie McKay and William Andrews in their casebook, Toni Morrisons Beloved: A Casebook (Casebook in Contemporary Fiction) state that each casebook reprints documents relating to the historical context and reception. The editors provide a forum where the readers can understand this literary masterpiece and the unique aspects of Americas racial and cultural experiences. They note that Morrisons Pulitzer Prize winning novel is a well-crafted novel that is excellent in spinning the literary web together by alternating between the past and the present. Indeed, this is Morrisons forte..