This lesson serves as a final assessment for Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved. Students will need to have a thorough working knowledge of the story and characters in the book. They will be asked to give Sethe a present-day trial since her trial in the novel does not satisfy today’s standards of justice. African-Americans, during that period of history, were not allowed to serve as witnesses or jurors. Was she guilty of committing infanticide, or simply “making them safe”, as she claimed? The class will be divided into two teams (defense and prosecution) and students will assume roles of characters and act as witnesses.
Length of time needed: 5 class periods
This lesson was written by Janet Freeberg-Lawson
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Source: Janet Freeberg-Lawson