Narrator and point of view

The short story “Sweetness” by Toni Morrison is a first-person narration. The narrator of the events is also the main character in the story, the African-American mother who asks her daughter to call her ‘Sweetness’: “It’s not my fault. So you can’t blame me. I didn’t do it and have no idea how it happened.” .

Readers are engaged through the uses of the narrative technique of direct address, through which the Sweetness seems to be talking directly to them: “You might think she’s a throwback, but a throwback to what? You should’ve seen my grandmother…”; “Some of you probably think it’s a bad thing to group ourselves according to skin color – the lighter the better…”

It is unclear who she is meant to be talking to, but possible someone she shares the story with at her nursing home when she has become an old woman. Ho...

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