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Motherhood in The Bean Trees


Another popular example of motherhood is Lou Ann’s relationship with Dwayne Ray. Although the child has actually not established a personality yet, and can not respond with his mom, we can not inform how Dwayne Ray’s part of the relationship is, however we can anticipate how it will be. It can be presumed that he will constantly be looked after by his mother, Lou Ann, for her uneasy ways and worry of her kids death keep her a vigilant mother, unrelenting in keeping him as safe and healthy as possible.

When she asked Taylor of her viewpoint of her motherhood skills, Taylor replied that “‘ The other side of worrying to much is just not caring …

Dwayne Ray will constantly know that, no matter what, you’re never going to disregard him. You’ll never simply relax and let him dehydrate, or mature without a personality, or anything like that. And that would be ever so much worse. You check out about it taking place in the paper all the time … Somebody forgetting a child in a cars and truck and letting It roast, or some such thing.

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If anything, Lou Ann, you’re simply too excellent of a mom. ‘” (pg. 156) of which she speaks overall reality that Lou Ann, although worrisome and doing not have in foundation, still is a good mom, since she attempts with all her efforts to ensure Dwayne Ray matures.

She is of the most passionate of mothers in the book, and will do her utmost to make sure that Dwayne Ray will live previous 2000, despite whatever her dreams and headaches may tell her.

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Taylor, the main mom of the book, is the only non-biological mom represented, that makes her relationship with Turtle even more unique, meaning that she took her despite their absence of household ties, and battled to keep her, although she could have quickly relinquished her duties as mom.

Throughout the book, she contributes she’s prevented all her life, in order to secure and take care of this little girl that was given to her care versus her own dreams. She has definitely no clue what to do, and constantly frets that she isn’t raising Turtle appropriately. Her worries are lessened, however, after Turtle beings speaking, her very first noise being laughter due to the fact that if Turtle was unhappy, she would have not laughed when she did a somersault.

Taylor becomes more confidant in her role, and eventually accepts it to be perfectly normal, as does everyone else, and no one even considers Turtle not to be Taylor’s child, proven when many biological references are made between the two, despite their lack of blood ties. After Turtle is attacked in the park, Taylor begins to think that she isn’t doing a good job as a segregate mother, and when Turtle is threatened to be taken away from Taylor, she feels that the case to save Turtle is helpless and begins to think that the state department would do better than she would in raising the child.

However, Mattie convinces her otherwise when she tells Taylor that she isn’t asking the correct questions, that “You’re asking yourself, Can I give this child the best possible upbringing and keep her out of harms way her whole life long? The answer is no, you can’t. But nobody else can either. Not a state home, that’s for sure. For heaven’s sake, the best they can do is turn their heads while the kids learn to pick locks and snort hootch, and then try to keep them out of jail. Nobody can protect a child from the world…

Do I think it would be interesting, maybe even enjoyable in the long run, to share my life with this kid and give her my best effort and maybe when all’s said and done, end up with a good friend. ‘” (pg. 178). What Mattie says here when comforting Taylor is a Barbara Kingsolver definition of motherhood. Taylor worries that she is unable to care for a child, and that with this attack, even the state would do a better job than she could, but, as Mattie said, no one can protect a child from the world, and especially someone that doesn’t care for them, like the state.

They need a mother, a guardian, anyone that cares about them to raise as good a child as chance permits. Through the caring and affection Taylor received as a child, the worry and extreme concern Lou Ann pays Dwayne Ray, and Taylor’s behavior towards a child that is not her own, all show examples of how, biological or not, a mother or a mother-like role in a child’s life can lead them to riches or ruin. Their moral fiber, their behavior, their ethics all depend upon what they are taught and raised upon.

Newt Hardbine and Jolene Shanks never had these morals and ethics instilled in them, thus leading them to terrible, even short lived, lives. Barbara Kingsolver uses these examples, even through minor characters such as Sandi at the Burger Derby and Bobby Bingo who sells vegetables out of his truck. All examples seen in The Bean Trees show that Motherhood and the role of a mother plays a predominant part not only in the book, but universally.

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Motherhood in The Bean Trees. (2017, Nov 09). Retrieved from

Motherhood in The Bean Trees

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