Topic: Compare Sethe to other fictional (or real) mothers who murdered their children or were responsible for their deaths (Medea, Mother Courage, or examples from the media that you are aware of).
Euripides’ Medea and Morrison’s Beloved are related to two mothers one of whom murdered their children (Medea) and another one who was responsible for their deaths (Sethe). In these two works there are lots of differences regarding the life conditions, the position and role of the two women at both periods of time and the character of each one in the plot.
Euripides’ Medea takes place in Corinth and expresses the inflexibility of the society with regards to gender roles. Medea challenges the general position of women; she represents a model of revolutionary woman who doesn’t comply with the expected norms of the society. According to the laws of Athenian society, women considered to be subordinate.
Medea was considered to be a barbarian, because of her actions. She was an abandoned wife who killed her two children in order to take revenge on her husband. According to Hall, her portrayal includes a “negative, vindictive and murderous female” (Hall 121). Her character seems to have an unusual strength and courag
According to the sparknotes, Sethe, unwilling to abandon her children to the physical, emotional, and spiritual drama she passed through as a slave, "she tries to murder them in an act that is, in her mind, one of motherly love and protection" (literature). Words: 936. She is aware of and totally conscious about her actions. Furthermore, Medea"tms and Sethe"tms characters and motives to their actions differ. But later on, "when Sethe learns to confront the past head-on, to assert herself in its presence, can she extricate herself from its oppressive power and begin to live freely, peacefully, and responsibly in the present"(literature). Medea is characterized as an evil, barbaric, selfish woman and witch because of her revengeful behavior; though Sethe seems to be "excused" in a way for her actions because she has lived traumatic experiences. Medea lived in a society where women had a low status and their activities were limited in the house. Her past let her hard and dreadful memories that signed her life and made her psychologically and emotionally unstable. But her motives are totally different in comparison to Sethe"tms ones. Morisson"tms Beloved explores the physical, emotional, and spiritual devastation created by slavery, a devastation that continues to haunt those characters who are former slaves even in freedom. Her most striking characteristic, however, is her devotion to her children. Sethe seems to be devoted to her children and not too proud to accept support from others. She thinks that she"tms a slave again and murders her children in order to prevent them from suffering. She appears to be brave, skillful and acquainted with some aspects of men"tms life and military. Sethe is the protagonist of the novel and a proud and noble woman.