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Sethe, of course, is the most difficult case, but she too is transformed in the end. When Denver returns to 124 with the abolitionist Mr. Bodwin, Sethe mistakes him for “schoolteacher”, the sadistic slave owner under whom she had suffered when she was a slave in the Sweet Home plantation. It was schoolteacher’s nephew who had raped her, and who had forced her to take the life of her own daughter. When she mistakes Denver’s companion for schoolteacher, she is overcome by rage, and attacks him with an ice pick. She is quickly brought to her senses, but this is the moment when she finally confronts her past, and therefore has dealt with it. Accordingly, Beloved is seen no more after this point, which further underlies the allegorical interpretation of her presence. The past has served its function, and now vanishes so that it is possible for all to live in the immediate present. The third and final part of the story, in which Beloved is absent, it titled “124 was quiet”, indicating a more peaceful existence in the present moment. The peace is only possible because Sethe had loved her children wholeheartedly, and enough to kill one of them. It was a crime committed under extreme circumstances, and motivated by love towards the victim. It is again the same overwhelming force of love that ushered in the presence of Beloved, so at to effect a final resolution.


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