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Published: 28-11-2019

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The theme of motherly love in The Secret Life of Bees

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd is an intriguing novel written in the perspective of young Lily Owens. Lily’s story begins while she is at her home with T Ray, her evil father who despises her. She runs away with her nanny, Rosaleen, following a short scuffle with the law. She and Rosaleen hitchhike their way to Tiburon, South Carolina exactly where they meet the Boatwright sisters who will modify their lives for the greater. These females take them in and treat them as if they are household even although they have just met. The girls in the novel portray considerable amounts of sympathy to Rosaline and Lilly. Via the characters of June, Rosaleen, and August, Lily’s quest for maternal values is fulfilled when she finds out that these personas portray the motherly qualities of forgiveness, caring, and wisdom.

In the novel, June’s character fluctuates from the initial concept of hatred of Lily to when she loves her, which unveils the nurturing good quality of forgiveness that is inside her. In the beginning chapters of the book, June has a kind of hostility towards Lily that is uneasily overlooked however, Lily soon figures out that June really loves her. In the course of the water fight scene, Lily is walking over the ladies and explains, “I stepped over them with the utmost care, and, seeing how cautious I was, June stepped over them, too, and then, to my shock, she hugged me. June Boatwright hugged me even though our garments created sweet, squishy sounds up and down our bodies” (170). Soon following the incident, June forgives Lily for whatever she may have done to result in June to dislike her. In the ending couple of chapters of the book, Lily is talking to August about how she is fairly unlovable. August tries to counteract her opinion stating all of the men and women that really like her: August, Rosaleen, the Daughters, “and June, despite her ways, loves [her], as well. It just took her a even though longer…” (242). After their speak, one can understand why June treated Lily in such a distasteful manner, and also how June has gone through a number of self-epiphanies to forgive her. Through the character of June Boatwright, forgiveness is shown as a maternal quality that cannot be overlooked.

Considering that the starting, Rosaleen has often been a essential mother figure to Lily by way of her good quality of caring. At the beginning of the story, it is Lily’s fourteenth birthday, in which T. Ray has fully ignored. Lily is upset and thinks no 1 actually loves her till she sees Rosaleen “bearing an angel food cake with fourteen candles”, 1 for each of her birth years (28). This act of compassion is obvious portrayal of Rosaleen’s maternal qualities. Another instance of kindness occurs close to the middle of the novel when Rosaleen confronts Lily on how she has not been with Rosaleen as significantly as August. She states, “Why would I be mad? Just ‘cause you invest all your time with August now ain’t no purpose for me to care. You pick who you want to talk with, it is not my company,” showing that she misses Lily (99). Rosaleen is ,in reality, jealous of August simply because of the extended quantity of time Lily has spent with her, even though Rosaleen has always been there for Lily. Caring is a essential quality of Rosaleen via her actions towards Lily in the novel.

August Boatwright, a woman of numerous assets, assists Lily in her journey to obtaining a mother with her crucial trait of wisdom. A single day, August takes Lily out to the hives and has a deep conversation with her about her loves and wishes. Throughout this day, August explains to Lily about how “most men and women do not have any concept about all the difficult life going on inside a hive. Bees have a secret life we do not know something about” (148). Lily utilizes this spark of expertise to relate to her daily life of secrets towards the sisters. One more symbol of wisdom that August shows Lily is through her affection towards every thing. In this scene, Lily is afraid to be stung by the hundreds of bees swarming all through the hive although she and August are beekeeping. To calm her, August tells Lily to “act like you know what you are performing, even if you do not. Above all, send the bees adore. Each small thing wants to be loved” (92). Eventually since of this suggestions, Lily becomes significantly less afraid of the bees and learns to love them and something that is frightening her. By way of multiple examples, August Boatwright is depicted as a character that has the capacity to guide Lily throughout her life with her maternal value of wisdom.

Even though her life at residence was terrible, Lily stumbles upon 3 women that will flip every little thing upside down. In the starting, June Boatwright is recognized as a non-forgiving and rude lady to Lily nevertheless, she starts to adore Lily all through the novel showing her forgiveness. Rosaleen has often been a mother figure for Lily who provides Lily her care. August is the epitome of wisdom for Lily, which offers her a motherly bond like no one particular else. These 3 principal characters are essential for Lily to discover what accurate motherhood is.
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